Though she played the part of one of the most memorable Bond ‘girls’ herself, Honor Blackman, star of the 1964 film Goldfinger, has called for an end to the famous ‘Bond girl’ label.
The actress, who played Pussy Galore opposite Sean Connery in the late 60s, said the term is “derogatory to women.” “Stop calling us Bond girls, we are women and actresses!” she pointed out in a column in The Mirror. Blackman has retained the title ever since her turn in the film and said it was time to stop the labelling.
She may have a point. Referring to a grown woman who is intelligent, confident and attractive (as all of 007’s leading ladies are) as simply a ‘girl’ doesn’t do the female in question any justice, and when you think about it, it does sound derogatory, if only mildly so. It would be ideal if everyone did stop referring to the leading ladies as mere ‘girls’ but then perhaps it’s a linguistically favoured choice; a Bond ‘woman’ probably doesn’t have the same ring to it, even if it is politically correct. There’s still the occasional ‘retro’ treatment of the female characters that needs some work, but the latest Spectre film is ahead of previous flicks in that the filmmakers (finally) used an age-appropriate actress to play the role of one of Bond’s female sidekicks, which is a positive.
Blackman, who at the time was infamously described as one of the oldest women to ever play opposite Bond (she was 38 and five years older than Connery), has now been stripped of that ‘title’ thanks to the fabulous Monica Bellucci’s role in the latest spy film.
The 90-year-old actress also added that the male-dominated film industry is “obsessed” with women’s ages. “I just don’t understand why we are still obsessed with age,” she said. “Or rather, I don’t understand why MEN are still so obsessed with the age of women. Because that’s really what we’re talking about.”
She went on to question why the age of Bellucci was up for discussion at all, following articles negatively dubbing the legendary Italian actress, who plays Lucia Sciarra, the “oldest ever Bond girl.”
“At the age of 38 I also became the oldest Bond girl – and, boy, did people bang on about it,” the Avengers star explained. “It’s wonderful that one of the leading ladies in the new 007 outing is taking the title from me, even if it did take more than half a century. But I also think it’s crazy that 51-year-old Monica Bellucci’s age is still causing a similar stir.”
Ageism towards women has been much debated recently by many fellow public figures, who have said it is “outrageous” and “awful,” which we fully agree with. In a recent interview, Bellucci, who is four years older than 47-year-old Daniel Craig, points out such an age difference is not considered newsworthy when genders are reversed.
“Just as younger women are attracted to older men, it shouldn’t be considered strange that men in their 20s and 30s are drawn to older women,” she said.
What do you make of the whole debate?
Via The Mirror