Elisabeth Moss reveals sexist execs slammed her ideas as ‘too female’

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  • But she got the last laugh

    Words by Jadie Troy-Pryde

    Elisabeth Moss is renowned for playing strong, constantly evolving and multifaceted female characters – we’ve fallen in love with her as Peggy Olsen in Mad Men, Zoey Bartlet in The West Wing, and more recently Offred in The Handmaid’s Tale.

    But she has recently revealed that being a critically acclaimed actress has not made her exempt from sexism in the workplace. With celebrities like Jessica Chastain calling out the gender imbalance in film, and Brie Larson lifting the lid on sexism in the fashion industry, Elisabeth has joined the ranks of women coming together to talk about their experiences – and she has shared a particularly shocking encounter she had with some male executives.

    Talking to Digital Spy, she admitted that one project she was passionate about was dropped as it was deemed ‘too female’. Yes, really.

    ‘I have experienced [sexism in the workplace] in pitching something that is female-led,’ Elisabeth said.

    ‘I have been told that it was too female. By [male] executives. Everything was too female. It was a female lead, a female protagonist, it was led by a woman. It was too female.

    ‘I was shocked by it. I won’t say specifically [what it was]… it was in the last couple of years. It’s shocking. It’s almost illegal.’

    However, Elisabeth got the last laugh and was eventually able to get the ball rolling on said project, continuing: ‘It wasn’t said to my face – I would dare a male executive to say it to my face now. You get feedback. We did fine.

    ‘We’re making it, it’s fine. Just not with those people who thought it was too female!’

    Praise be.

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