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January 16, 2008


Mes Deux Cents


I think it is fairly difficult for women actors over 50 regardless of race. I think the unique difficulty for Black women actors in this category is the Black woman character typecasting.

Black women in film and TV generally fall into two categories, from my point of view, over-sexed younger women and sexless older women.

For instance is Angela Basset too pretty and sexy to play older roles? We see Loretta Devine and Jennifer Lewis and Alfre Woodard constantly. They generally play the matronly older Black woman who isn't sexy.

If you look at your list of 50 pluses, it seems the more attractive they are the less they work.

Hollywood still has the mammy hang up about older Black women.

Do you see that pattern too?

LaJane Galt

Angela won't play stereotypes, so that limits her choices. Sadly. She could be an Ellen Barkin-type (with more acting chops).

Jennifer Lewis does a lot of theater and Loretta has that voice. They both seem to end up in those sassy "tell 'em" roles.


@ Mes Deux and LaJane

Yep. I'm certain it wouldn't be pretty -- if I were to uncover exactly what the roles are that some of these actresses are stuck with; i.e. Irma Hall, Jenifer Lewis, etc.

That sassy thing and that mammy thing is still there.


this tells us that if we listed men over 50 they would have 50 or 60 roles maybe more. think george clooney how many roles has he had in the last 2 years and how many will he have in the next 2. we need tosupport women and make sure that women are shown in realistic light. dating, having sex, rearing children, advancing in their career, et al. these are things that women in their 50's are doing .


@ Iris.

Absolutely, Iris. There's so many stories that fall between sassy and mammy; so many.


Interesting list you've got here TBA. Ditto what Mes Deux Cents said. The numbers might not vary much between the groups, but the quality of the roles most likely does.

I thought a previous chart you posted was even more telling and hopeless - the next generation of black actresses compared to their white counterparts. With Hollywood gradually losing interest in the above generation, which actresses are in line to replace them?



@ Obenson Report

Good question.

Ann Brock

Thanks for the information. It is a sad thing when we get older we get kick to the side.

L. Anderson

who was the beautiful actress that was in the first scene of let's do it again with Bill Cosby.


Denise Nicholas?

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