Dame Helen Mirren has spoken out about the “profound sexism” still present in Hollywood today, which prevents older women from scoring more movie roles. The 70 year old actress added that she believes roles for women in movies would not change until the roles for women in real life also shifted.

Helen MirrenHelen Mirren has spoken about Hollywood’s sexism and ageism.

When asked by The Guardian if the acting industry less accepting of older women, Mirren said, “There is profound sexism – the ‘Would you fuck her?’ kind of attitude. On the cinema screen, your face is 10ft high and 6ft wide. It’s huge.”

“I, as a cinemagoer, like to see beautiful faces up there – it’s a pleasure. But there’s also story and entertainment, and one wants variety in that. You also want, as an audience member, to see people that you recognise and can identify with.”

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But as to wether or not this will change anytime soon, Mirren doesn't see Hollywood taking the first step. Instead the actress believes real life role for women must change first. “When roles for women in real life change, then you will see change in the film industry,” Mirren explained.

“If we happen to see a [female] president of the United States, and a world expert on marine biology comes on television and it’s a woman, or the female head of a petroleum company on the news.”

“I think what’s galling to me is when you see someone who’s supposed to be a high-level surgeon in a film and she’s being played by a 28-year-old actress. They wouldn’t even be qualified yet, never mind eminent,” she added.

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Mirren also said she believes Hollywood suffers from classism, as only people from wealthier backgrounds can now afford to pursue a career in acting. While trying to become an actor was a dangerous thing financially when Mirren began her career it was still ‘doable,’ something which she believes it might not be anymore.

Mirren began her acting career in the 1960s, with the National Youth Theatre and then the Royal Shakespeare Company, before moving in to TV and films. At 70, Mirren’s career shows no signs of slowing down and she will next be seen on the big screen opposite ‘Breaking Bad’s’ Bryan Cranston in biopic, Trumbo.