'Ocean's 8' cast say the abundance of white male film critics is 'unfair' (exclusive)

Hanna Flint
Contributor

This week, a new study was released detailing the gender and racial breakdown of film criticism for the top 100 movies of 2017.

USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative’s findings show that the majority of people reviewing these films were white males, nearly 80% in fact, which has led to an outpouring in the film industry of people urging for better representation.

Though some people, like Cate Blanchett, have always known that this disparity existed amongst movie reviewers but is happy that “finally these things are being said out loud.”

“I always knew that but I think now people are pointing it out,” Cate Blanchett told Yahoo Movies at the Ocean’s 8 junket. “When you start pointing that stuff out you realise there’s a certain gaze that looks at women.”

Ocean’s 8 cast have their say on the dominance of white male critics

Her co-star Mindy Kaling calls the domination of white male critics “unfair” and referred to Meryl Streep, who made a damning attack on reviewers aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes in 2015 for championing white male voices above all others.

“Meryl was talking about this, she had a great point of view about it,” Mindy explained. “She made movies for women but they are reviewed by men who don’t necessarily value it or don’t look at it in the same point of view as a woman doing it, but it seems just unfair.

“Although if I had to base my career on what white men wanted I would be very unsuccessful, so there is obviously an audience out there who want to watch things like [Ocean’s 8], what I work on, what Sarah works on.

“And the thing about so much of what this movie is, I think white men, critics would enjoy it, would enjoy my work, ” she continued, “but often I think there is a critic who will damn it in a way because they don’t understand it, because they come at it at a different point of view, and they’re so powerful, Rotten Tomatoes.”

The cast of Ocean’s 8 at the New York City film premiere.

Sarah Paulson is thankful that the reviews so far hasn’t stopped people coming out to see their heist movie, which earned the highest domestic box office opening for the franchise so far.

“It’s hard in any landscape but right now people don’t go to the movies anymore,” the actress explained.

“With Netflix and all the things that are happening on television, in order to leave your house, if you’ve got children, a family, any kind of life at all, which I think everybody is overwhelmed by, I think to take time to go to the movie theatres is a big deal and really exciting so I feel that’s a big win.”

Sandra Bullock added that she thinks it’s time young kids reviewed movies meant for them, not adult critics.

“I also think children should review children’s films,” Bullock said. “As a mother, my children give the best reviews! Let kids review the films that are for them don’t have the one from Harvard go review a children’s film they’re not going to get it.”

Ocean’s 8 is out in cinemas from Monday, June 18

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