Carrie-Anne Moss Was Offered a Role as a Grandma After Turning 40
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Actress Carrie-Anne Moss revealed that a truly bonkers thing happened the day after she turned 40: She was asked to read a script for a role as a grandmother.
The Matrix star sat down with her friend, author, and filmmaker Justine Bateman, in a conversation for Bateman’s new book, Face: One Square Foot of Skin, at the 92nd Street Y in New York. They discussed what it’s like to be a woman aging in Hollywood.
After Bateman declared that she had to “get rid of this idea that my face was something that was horrible and should be fixed," Moss offered an anecdote of her own to the crowd, as per a report in The Hollywood Reporter.
"I had heard that at 40 everything changed," said Moss, now 53. "I didn't believe in that because I don't believe in just jumping on a thought system that I don't really align with. But literally the day after my 40th birthday, I was reading a script that had come to me and I was talking to my manager about it. She was like, 'Oh, no, no, no, it's not that role [you're reading for], it's the grandmother. I may be exaggerating a bit, but it happened overnight. I went from being a girl to the mother to beyond the mother."
Moss later emphasized that it’s been “kind of brutal” to see herself grow older.
"You don't feel like you've aged much and suddenly you're seeing yourself onscreen," she said, before later going to say: "I would look at these French and European actresses and they just had something about them that felt so confident in their own skin. I couldn't wait to be that. I strive for that. It's not easy being in this business. There's a lot of external pressure."
Bateman and Moss are far from the first to talk about the “external pressure” that women face in the industry. Studies have long proven that while women receive more roles early in their careers, that trend reverses sharply after age 30. Men, however, receive an increasing number of roles through their 40s.
As Jane Fonda put it to The Daily Telegraph in 2015, “ageism is alive and well.”
"It is okay for men to get older, because men become more desirable by being powerful," she said. "With women, it's all about how we look. Men are very visual, they want young women. So, for us, it's all about trying to stay young."