As 2013 wound to a close it was easy to get caught up in the buzz surrounding Beyonce's surprise album drop, Britney's new Vegas show, Miley's continually strange antics, and J-Law's success on the big screen. But 2013 was actually a great year for women over 40. Hollywood raked in its highest annual revenue this year, coming in at almost $11 billion. Sandra Bullock, 49, was a huge part of that. Gravity earned over half a billion dollars alone. Even though the film also shows the grandiose beauty of space, it's mostly centered around Sandra Bullock's character. The producer of the Hunger Games, Nina Jacobsen is 48, and writer Suzanne Collins is 51. And hurray we had the first fantastic female-buddy movie. The Heat. Sandra Bullock (again!) and Melissa McCarthy, 43. Four out of five Golden Globe Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Drama) nominees are women over 40: Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett (44), Judi Dench (79), Emma Thompson (54). (Meryl Streep, 64, is nominated in the Musical or Comedy category.)
The 'small' (tv) screen was also dominated by scores of women over 40. Julianna Margulies, 47, as my personal favorite in The Good Wife. This year the Golden Globes will he hosted by Tina Fey, 43, and Amy Poehler, 42, and Ellen DeGeneres, 55, is hosting the Oscars.
The change of characters that older women are playing has drastically changed as well. They are no longer the typical silly-old-lady roles; the shrew, the bitter hag, the brazen broad. Women over 40 have become beautiful again, they have shown the world that their talent doesn't last until their good looks and wrinkle-free face give out.
This is one instance where Hollywood, however inadvertently, is doing good and showing older women that there is space for them in pop culture. Its great to see these phenomenal actresses refuse to accept no for an answer...to be unwilling to accept the shallow standards of the entertainment industry as the last word.
Perhaps its one of the first steps on the road to changing society's perception that beauty is everything and that beauty means goodness and talent and intelligence.