LATEST: Hollywood actress Reese Witherspoon has hit back at comments she slammed Jessica Simpson as a dumb blonde who cashes in on her stupidity, insisting she was misquoted.

The LEGALLY BLONDE star allegedly maintained Simpson's reality TV show NEWLYWEDS made her "want to throw daggers" - but now says her words were manipulated.

She says, "Actually I didn't name anyone, I was misquoted."

Nevertheless Witherspoon retains strong convictions that female Hollywood leads are often paid to celebrate their stupidity: "I believe there's a movement among young women to play dumb, and I don't think that's a good message to promote if you're a public figure.

"In the past too many women had to overcome being told that they weren't smart enough to vote, smart enough to go to college, smart enough to hold high paying jobs."