Women have come a long way in this day and age, but as society has taught us brutally in the recent years, we still have a much longer road ahead of us. Take the wage gap between men and women in the work place: while we fight tooth and nail to have equal wages, some people go out of their way to set us back 100 years. Unfortunately, a handful of those people happen to be involved in the media. Sometimes when walking the red carpet, or attending a press junket, insensitivity can overcome a person and they end up asking a ridiculous question to an actress – one they would have never in a million years ask a man in the same profession. These 15 actresses in particular have proven that they will not stand for blatantly degrading remarks and questions, and will be a role model for women (and men) everywhere.
15 Blake Lively
Blake Lively is an extremely talented and versatile actress, who happens to be a dignified voice of reason (and brilliance) in the Hollywood community. She also happens to be married to actor Ryan Reynolds and raising two beautiful children. When she was attending Variety’s Power of Women luncheon in order to promote the non-profit organization Child Rescue Coalition, Lively was asked the pretty odd, not to mention gender biased, question: “What’s your power outfit?”
The question was extremely out of place at the luncheon and Lively was quick to point that out. “Come on, you want to talk about an outfit here today?” she said to the reporter. “No way. Come on. Come on, we’re about building women up. Come on, outfits? Would you ask a man that?” Even though the reporter tried to clarify, Lively pressed on. “But you wouldn’t ask a man what his power outfit is, I’m sorry. Like see, this is the moment that we become more aware and that we change.”
She did invite the reporter to have another shot and ask a different question.
14 Anne Hathaway
Anne Hathaway went from a Disney princess to a Hollywood powerhouse in a matter of years. She’s a critically acclaimed actress who took home the Academy Award for best supporting actress for her performance in 2011’s musical Les Miserables, but yet all anyone is able to see (and judge) are her looks in general. While promoting her film The Dark Knight Raises back in 2011, Hathaway was asked “is there a certain regimen you put yourself through in terms of the diet or the workout?”
Hathaway didn’t take the reporter seriously and asked why he was asking that particular question. Was he trying to lose weight himself? “Seriously we have to talk about this,” she said. “What, what do you want? Are you trying to fit into a cat suit?”
The reporter learned his lesson that day, hopefully.
13 Scarlett Johansson
There are many times Scarlett Johansson has shut down seemingly gender biased reporters who say “they’re just trying to do their jobs.” While out doing the press promotion for The Avengers in the U.K., Johansson sat down with co-star Robert Downey Jr. in order to answer some questions about the film during a press conference. The reporter asked a very insightful question and when it was Johansson’s turn, her question was right out ridiculous.
“How did you approach this role, bearing in mind that kind of maturity as a human being when it comes to the Tony Stark character?” the reporter kindly asked Downey Jr. After the actor answered, the reporter then looked at Johansson, and with a straight face, asked “To get into shape for Black Widow did you have anything special to do in terms of the diet, like did you have to eat any specific food, or that sort of thing?”
Johansson didn’t miss a beat and looked at Downey Jr. “How come you get the interesting existential question and I get the rabbit food question?”
12 Alice Eve
When actress Alice Eve came onto the screen, some people deemed her nothing more than another gorgeous face. As she progressed in her career, people were able to see much more of her talent set and looked beyond her face and body. Well, some people, that is. While out on the press run promoting her film Star Trek Into Darkness, Eve was asked possibly the dumbest, most absurd, question I’ve ever heard in my entire life.
“Aren't you a little bit too beautiful to be a science officer?”
If I was asked that question, the reporter would have gotten a quick throat punch and probably would have left the interview limping. But Eve kept her grace and wits about her and answered quickly. “Oh, umm, that’s very kind of you; I’m very flattered. But I didn’t know that those things were mutually exclusive.”
11 Keira Knightly
As we all know, if Jane Austin was alive today, actress Keira Knightly would be her personal muse. Her poise, genius, and talent have managed to turn Hollywood on its side in terms of making progress for women in her field. She’s an extremely versatile role model, so when she’s asked an outright stupid question, she doesn’t let it overpower her or the scenario she’s thrust into. After she had just won a Hollywood Film Award for her part in the film The Imitation Game, Knightly was asked a very familiar question that most reporters often ask actresses (the extremely lazy reporters, that is):
“How do you balance your career and your personal life?”
Knightly, still basking in the glow of her win, answered the question without cussing out the reporter. “Are you going to ask all the men that tonight?” she asked.
10 Lauren Conrad
If women aren’t seen as equals, they are either seen as burdens or worse – objects of desire. Lauren Conrad rose to fame during her Laguna Beach days and went on to become an author and world known fashion designer who has made her mark on the industry at a young age. Yet, still, she only seems to be known for her looks in general. Usually, when an actress is attractive, she can be a target for some heinously screwed up questions. During a 2012 Sirius XM radio interview, Conrad completely turned a strange question around so well that she received a high-five from the interviewer, who couldn’t deny the utter brilliance of her answer.
“What’s your favorite position?” was the question, referring to her favorite position in the bedroom. The fashion designer had actually pulled that specific question from a “mystery bag” of questions.
After taking a beat to reply, Conrad answered the question. “CEO”.
9 Ariana Grande
What I don’t seem to understand is instead of all these women having to answer idiotic questions, why don’t the questions just stop being asked in the first place? Apparently, not everyone gets the memo on this, and will continue to roll around in a pit of stupid. Ariana Grande faced this scenario when she was doing an interview on a radio station called Power 106 in order to promote her newest single. Grande was appalled at some of the questions being asked – questions like: “If you could use makeup or your phone one last time, which would one would you pick?”
Ariana couldn’t believe what she was hearing. “Is that what you think girls have trouble choosing between?” she asked. “Is this what men assume that that’s what girls would have to choose between?” She then went on to explain that women simply aren’t zombies who are addicted to such trivial things. When the hosts turned and attempted to back her speech by saying “Ladies, learn! Listen and learn, ladies!” Grande clapped back.
8 Melissa McCarthy
Actress Melissa McCarthy is quickly turning into a comedic mastermind who is slaying every avenue she goes down. She’s officially made White House press secretary her b**ch and has been taking down haters left and right. Despite her brilliance, McCarthy is often only judged based on her appearance. She dropped in on the Ellen DeGeneres Show to talk about a horrid thing she experienced with a very gender bias reporter after her film Tammy was released. She said the critic wrote an extremely troubling review about her performance. “He said basically, I’m only a good actress when I look attractive,” McCarthy told the host. “And my husband shouldn’t be allowed to direct me because he let me look hideous.”
Apparently, she met the reporter at the Toronto Film Festival and confronted him. “Would you do that to a man?” she asked him. “I put a lot of time and effort having her completely not look like she cared about herself; it was part of how I felt she felt on the inside. I said, ‘Would you ever say that to a man?’ and he said, ‘Well, I mean, you really looked bad.’”
She then proceeded to rip him apart. “Do you have children? I hope you don’t have a daughter,” she said to him. “Just know every time you write stuff every girl in this country reads that and they just get a little bit chipped away.”
7 Lena Dunham
On the her HBO show Girls, Lena Dunham plays the rather obnoxious Hannah, a young writer who appears to be extremely comfortable with herself (but not her emotional state). One reporter, during a Television Critics Association panel with executive producers Judd Apatow and Jenni Konner and Dunhan, asked a very odd question: Why is Dunham’s character naked so much (on the show)?
“Yeah. It’s because it’s a realistic expression of what it’s like to be alive, I think,” the actress responded. “If you’re not into me, that’s your problem.”
Apatow also jumped in to express his distaste for the question, and the reporter, in general. “You should read it and discuss it with other people. It’s very offensive,” Apatow said about the question itself.
“Is it sexist?” the reporter asked. “Because I would ask the same question-"
“It’s sexist and offensive, it’s misogynistic,” Apatow stated.
6 Laverne Cox
Laverne Cox is a trail blazer in the transgender community, and she’s been extremely vocal about bringing transgender rights to light. But when the Orange is the New Black star sat down with Katie Couric in order to talk about these rights, she was hit with some pretty insensitive questions. Couric only appeared to be interested in discussing about trans gender specific parts. She attempted to reiterate by saying it was just to “educate others who aren’t familiar with transgenders". Also there with Cox was transgender model Carmen Carrera, who shot down the invasive questions by saying “I don’t want to talk about it, it’s really personal.”
However Cox wasn’t about to let the questions slide. “I do feel there is a preoccupation with that,” she said. “The preoccupation with transition and surgery objectifies trans people. And then we don’t get to really deal with the real lived experiences. The reality of trans people’s lives is that so often we are targets of violence. We experience discriminations disproportionately to the rest of the community. Our unemployment rate is twice the national average; if you are a trans person of color, that rate is four times the national average. The homicide rate is highest among trans women. If we focus on transition, we don’t actually get to about those things.”
Songstress superstar Rihanna often finds herself in the centre of controversial hurricanes. When she was the victim of domestic violence (caused by then-boyfriend Chris Brown) she stayed out of the limelight and refused to answer certain questions. Then, all heads turned when it was revealed that she was the (always) “object” of Drake’s obsessions since a majority of his music revolved around his love for her. But does that mean she should be subjected to dumba** questions on the red carpet? No, but some reporters don’t seem to think so. While promoting her Rogue Man fragrance launch in Atlanta, a reporter asked her what she was looking for in terms of a boyfriend: “What are you looking for in a man,” the reporter asked. “To wear his cologne?”
Rihanna paused for a second before answering. “Pardon? I’m not looking for a man. Let’s start there.”
4 Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton made her mark on history and on Washington D.C. and became a role model for young women who wish to one day become president. While the 2016 Presidential election slipped away from her, Clinton made a lasting impression on women all around the world. She has flat out refused to answer gender biased questions regarding her appearance or choice in clothes since her male counterparts would never be asked such trivial things. Some time ago, Clinton was talking about the many barriers women face since a majority of the population is critical about a woman’s appearance rather than her mind at a Council on Foreign Relations panel. Apparently, the moderator wasn’t paying much attention since this question was then asked: “Okay. Which designers do you prefer?”
Clinton was quick on the uptake. “Would you ever ask a man that question?”
3 Mayim Bialik
Mayim Bialik first came onto the scene with her NBC show Blossom a couple decades ago. Recently, she’s been making waves as Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler, a neurobiologist on The Big Bang Theory and sometimes finds herself on the tail end of some idiot question asked by an idiot who failed to do his research on the actress. While walking the red carpet at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, Bialik was asked the following question: “Being on The Big Bang Theory, how many people – not that you’re the genius – think that you can solve calculus at the top of the hat?”
Um, what the utter hell, dude?
If he knew how to use Google, the reporter would have known the following: Bialik has a PHD in neuroscience.
“I actually was trained in calculus for several years,” she patiently answered. “I’m a neuroscientist.”
I would have thought a middle finger would suffice as an answer to that insane question, but Bialik is a class act.
2 Emma Stone
Despite being a critically acclaimed actress for years, some of the press still sees actress Emma Stone as a skirt with arms and legs. Even Teen Vogue, who has since mended their ways, was guilty of this back in 2012 when Stone and then-boyfriend Andrew Garfield were out promoting their newest Spider-Man movie. Stone had respectively answered a question regarding her blond hair and Garfield, who was turned off by the question simply glanced at Stone and said “I don’t get asked that.”
Stone then added herself “You get asked interesting, poignant questions because you are a boy.”
While the reporter attempted to backtrack the question and clarify themselves, Garfield pounced and wouldn’t let it slide. “It’s sexism,” he said blatantly.
Stone nodded and agreed. “It’s sexism.”
1 Megan Fox
Like many of the other actresses on this list, Megan Fox is usually only judged by her looks. Sure, she’s stunning, but she’s no damn dummy. She proved so when she went on MTV News to discuss her newest film at the time.
Reporter: “The fact that there aren’t many super hero films with super heroins with female leads…”
Fox: “ Yeah.”
Reporter: “What’s your take on that? Do you feel like it’s time, it’s a matter of time? Before we see more of those?”
Fox: “Do you think that I would answer anything but yes to that question? Do you think I would be like ‘no, it’s not time for women to be in movies, let’s take it back 50 years’?”
GIVE THE WOMAN A STANDING OVATION, PEOPLE. Thank you for slaying, Ms. Fox.