Is there bad blood between Famke Janssen and Russell Crowe? If there wasn’t before, there is now. Recently, Russell Crowe confessed that he felt he was too old to play certain leads, such as his Gladiator role, and commented that his female counterparts should be as realistic when considering film roles.
Famke Janssen was quick to respond to his remarks. Upon learning of Crowe’s advice that women in their 40s and 50s should not be seeking out roles intended for younger, twenty-something actresses, Ms. Janssen’s impassioned response was captured by reporters at the red carpet premiere of Taken 3 on January 7 in New York City.
“That’s interesting. I don’t remember him being female.”
Famke continued to elaborate on the roles women play in today’s films, compared to the stronger roles female actresses often played in the films of classic Hollywood, reports Us Magazine. Ms. Janssen explained that actresses in the 1920s and 1930s were often seen as smart, funny, quirky, or dramatic, but, in the present Hollywood climate, Famke says, women are no longer free to be as open in film. Janssen added that there is a disproportionately higher number of male leads to female leads, but that change is in the air.
“The good news is it’s changing and it’s changing largely because a lot of the shows… are turning to women for female driven storylines and plots. I think that’s a really great departure from where we were.”
Prior to Ms. Janssen’s response, Meryl Streep had already come to the actor’s defense, expressing her opinion that Crowe had been misunderstood, while Jessica Chastain — most recently known for her role in Interstellar — also criticized Russell for his comments, according to the Hamilton Spectator.
“I think he’s getting his foot stuck in his mouth,” said Chastain.
Shortly after her rebuttal against Crowe, Ms. Janssen also elaborated on the death of her character in the final installment of the Taken film franchise.
“Before I read the script they already told me. And I said, ‘How dead?’ And they said, ‘Dead.’ And I said, ‘How quickly?’ So we had a negotiation about it, but somebody had to take the bullet, figuratively speaking, and I took it. I took the high road and said ‘I’ll be the one.’ It’s the third and final installment and I’m thrilled to go to make it a better story line so nobody gets taken.”
Famke started her acting career with television, before graduating to films. Early films, like Lord of Illusions and GoldenEye, helped to establish Ms. Janssen, exposing her unique beauty to the public. Famke Janssen, now 50, is most notable for her roles in the Taken and X-Men film franchises, but Ms. Janssen has also been seen in the Netflix original series Hemlock Grove.
Find out why Liam Neeson decided to join Famke Janssen in returning for the final Taken film. The reason may surprise you!