George Clooney is a fan of Sandra Bullock’s simple idea of overcoming the lack of great female roles in Hollywood: “a lot more” roles written for men could be played by women.
The actor/writer/director/producer told reporters at the Toronto Film Festival that he put the idea into practice on his own film, Our Brand Is In Crisis.
The script about an American who consults on foreign political campaigns was languishing in development hell around Hollywood until Sandra Bullock showed interest in the lead role.”
So Clooney and producing partner Grant Heslov simply rejiggered the part for Bullock.
“The minute she called and said she wanted to play the role that had been written as a man,” Our Brand was no longer in crisis and on the track to actually getting made.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, Sandra Bullock had spoken about the the lack of roles for older women in Hollywood and refusing to stand idly by while older male actors keep landing complex, tailor-made parts.
“About two-and-a-half years ago I just put out the feelers saying, ‘I’m not reading anything I’m excited about. Are there any male roles out there that [the filmmakers] don’t mind switching to female?”
Judging from the trailer for Our Brand, it’s pretty clear Clooney and Heslove made the right call.