Today's Evil Beet Gossip
Meryl Streep

Meryl Streep Funding Lab For Female Screenwriters Over 40

meryl streep

Meryl Streep is basically the best living actress on this planet. I know that’s a massive statement to make, but one I feel totally comfortable with. She’s incredibly talented, and that’s an understatement. She’s also fascinating as a human being. The few times I’ve attended press conferences with her, I just found myself completely enthralled with watching her speak, watching her mind tick as she carefully measures out her words… she’s just amazing. Now that I’m done gushing, however, I’ve gotta tell you about another awesome thing she’s done: she just announced that she’s funding a screenwriting lab for female writers over the age of 40.

From Variety:

The creation of the lab, and Streep’s involvement in its founding, was announced Sunday at a panel discussion presented as part of the Tribeca Film Festival.

Called the Writers Lab, the screenplay development program aims to increase opportunities for female screenwriters over the age of 40. This year the initiative will accept submissions May 1-June 1, with eight winning scribes named Aug. 1.

Among the mentors to participate in the Lab’s inaugural year are writer-director Gina Prince-Bythewood (“Beyond the Lights”), producer Caroline Kaplan (“Boyhood”), and writers Kirsten Smith (“Legally Blonde”) and Jessica Bendinger (“Bring It On”).

According to NYWIFT, Streep ponied up a “significant” contribution to fully fund the Lab. The actress has been a longtime supporter of NYWIFT.

The Writers Lab will take place at a retreat in upstate New York.

Excellent! Especially in Hollywood, not only are the opportunities for women much lower than those available to men, but women over 40 might as well forget it. So glad she’s decided to put some money and resources into nurturing new talent. Just another reason to love her!

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Meryl Streep agrees with Russell Crowe’s ageism (sorta)

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Remember how Russell Crowe recently said in an interview that actresses should stop trying to be young and stop complaining about ageism in Hollywood because hey, Meryl Streep can still get work? Well, Meryl Streep was actually asked about Russell’s comments during a press conference for Into the Woods and her thoughts are very typically Meryl-ish:

If you’re at work and can’t watch the video, here’s a synopsis of what she said, via Vanity Fair:

As for his comments denying that actresses have a hard time being cast as they get older Streep suggested that Crowe was simply “proving a point” and that he was generally “talking about himself as most actors do.” After literally waving off his remarks, she continued, “I agree with him. It’s good to live within the place that you are.” Acknowledging the fact that she plays a witch in Into the Woods—after speaking out in the past about how she bristled at being offered similar parts once she hit the four-decade milestone—she defended her choice to take on the character. “This witch [starts out as] a very, very young woman,” she said referring to how she plays the witch at both the “young and beautiful” and “old and ugly” phases of her life. “It was easier to do that. . . to make the transformation,” she added.

Now y’all know Meryl is my ultimate queen for life so I will never say a bad word against her, but I sorta wish she talked about the bigger points here – like the fact that women wouldn’t need to be scared of getting older in Hollywood if youth wasn’t so highly valued, yada yada. However, it was a press conference for this movie, not the Meryl Streep Show or a conference on her opinions on life, so I can totally see why she answered the way she did.

I still think Russell Crowe is a dickhead, though.

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Meryl Streep is preaching truth again

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Meryl Streep is absolutely wonderful, isn’t she? She’s always killing it both as an actor and an awesome human being, so I always listen to what she has to say (seriously – when I went to a press conference for August, Osage Country last year I nearly cried with joy just looking at her in front of me). This time around, she’s talking about youth and how our culture is so obsessed with being young.

“I would say our culture is pretty youth-obsessed,” the Oscar winner, 65, told PEOPLE at the Disney movie musical’s premiere Monday night. “Especially people that pass 40.”

Streep says when she turned the big 4-0, her acting prospects looked pretty bleak.

“When I was 40, I was offered three witch [roles]. I was not offered any female adventurers or love interests or heroes or demons,” she recalls. “I was offered witches because I was ‘old’ at 40.”

“Things have changed since then, I think,” she says. “That was 25 years ago. Now there’s so much more interesting stuff available. But still … ” she trails off.

I can totally see/hear her saying all this. She does this thing when she’s talking where it’s like her brain has so many thoughts that she goes off into another world, trying to figure out how to put what she wants to say perfectly. Sorry, I stan for Meryl.

What do you think? Are we too obsessed with youth? Is it getting better? Are you terrified of getting old?

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Emily Blunt saved Meryl Streep’s life

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Emily Blunt and Meryl Streep has been thick as thieves since filming The Devil Wears Prada back in 2005, and I love it because I love them and find it adorable when two awesome people turn out to be friends. I know, I’m weird. Anyhow, they recently got the chance to reunite for Into the Woods, where Meryl once again played an evil witch (of a different kind, this time around) and Emily was forced to serve her.

While on set, apparently Meryl almost injured herself and Emily caught her and it was all a very funny story that Emily told on The Late Show with David Letterman this week (via US Weekly).

“I did save her life. We were rehearsing a scene where she’s playing the witch and she’s supposed to jump onto the table with a cape and everything.”

“I just saw this thing happen in slow-motion… You know when you see something awful happen and it’s like the sound cuts out, you know? Meryl Streep’s foot got caught in her cape and we just started to watch her slowly topple head-first toward the concrete floor.”

“[Director] Rob Marshall and James Corden froze, didn’t move, and the pregnant woman caught her. I caught her!”

“She owes me! She should play my lowly dressmaker. She owes me bigtime. She was tormenting me in [Devil's Wears Prada], and now she’s tormenting me in this movie. She’s this witch that has cast this horrible spell on our house. I just said, ‘This is it.’ We couldn’t have any other dynamic now. ‘You just have to hate me in films.’”

“She owes me, that’s why I think at some point I should play the Queen of Versailles and she can be my lowly dressmaker,” Blunt added. “I did mention it to her. I think it’s a great idea and I mentioned it to her, and her response was, ‘Dream on.’ That’s Meryl Streep… She’s so amazing, it’s annoying at this point. It’s annoying.”

Ha, cute! Frankly, I would watch any movie that Emily Blunt and Meryl Streep did together, regardless of what it was about, whether it was nine hours long, whatever. I’m into it.

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The trailer for ‘The Giver’ is here, and it looks great

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Y’all know how much it annoys me that all we seem to do is make movies out of books instead of producing original cinema content, but I can’t really argue with an adaptation of The Giver, because it’s a classic and also, the movie looks REALLY good. How can you really go wrong when you manage to get Meryl Streep? And Jeff Bridges! (And don’t forget Taylor Swift! LOL)

You see my point.

In any case, the first full theatrical trailer is here and I can’t wait to see this! I think it looks suspenseful, exciting and really interesting. I don’t know that I’ve ever really used the word “suspenseful” in any serious context before in my life, but here we are.

What do you think? Will you see The Giver? Do your remember reading the book?

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Meryl Streep thought she was too ugly to be an actress

meryl streep

Meryl Streep is a beautiful queen and I love her, but turns out it took her a long time to love herself and she actually thought she was too ugly to be an actress. WHAAAT?

Giving a speech at Indiana University on Tuesday, where she was accepting an honourary doctorate, she gave out some advice to the students there and explained her own past in the industry (via US Weekly):

“I think I was probably like every other girl who puts on a princess dress and expects everyone to pay full and total attention. And most of us grow out of that. I was always in plays, but I thought it was vain to be an actress,” the 64-year-old said. “Plus, I thought I was too ugly to be an actress. Glasses weren’t fabulous then.”

“For young women, I would say, don’t worry so much about your weight,” continued the graduate of Vassar College and the Yale School of Drama. “Girls spend way too much time thinking about that, and there are better things.”

“For young men, and women, too, what makes you different or weird, that’s your strength. Everyone tries to look a cookie-cutter kind of way and actually the people who look different are the ones who get picked up. I used to hate my nose. Now I don’t. It’s okay.”

Love me some Meryl Streep. And how this woman ever thought she was ugly is beyond me:

meryl streep 2

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Watch: ‘The Giver’ trailer is here!

When Meryl Streep is in a film, you can pretty much guarantee that it’s going to be amazing… as long as you don’t count Mama Mia. Such is the case with The Giver, Weinstein Co.’s reimagining of the classic Lewis Lowry book. It’s also got Jeff Bridges and, less impressively, Katie Holmes.

The Giver won’t be out until August 15th, but here’s the first trailer. What do we think so far?