5 Actresses Who Say It’s Hard to Find Good Roles for Women

It seems unfortunately true that many acting roles for women are similar: they serve as the girlfriend role or as the eye candy – and there just isn’t much substance or real depth to these characters. These 5 actresses have opened up on struggling to find good roles and bringing real meaning to their parts as women. Saying that it is hard to have their voices heard or even select a role that they feel is a genuine and exciting opportunity for them, these actresses have candidly spoken on their struggle to show off their ability on screen because of how little room they’re given to show it.

Anjelica Huston


Anjelica says it is very hard to find roles of substance because there are very few: “With female roles, it’s always been difficult. Particularly since one actress gets all the great ones, and the rest of us scurry around to kind of beat each other for the other ones. I’m sick of making excuses for the fact that there are very few good roles for actresses. Over the years I try to be positive. But in the long run, when you really look at it, I think it’s sort of a bit sad, because there are so many women out there, I think, aching to see good work, and to identify and all of that.”

Cara Delevingne

Cara does her best to bring depth to her roles but often struggles to have her voice heard: “Every movie I’ve done I’ve had to fight for lines and fight for point of view. Usually it’s a male director, male producers. It’s all very much a man’s point of view. I speak up and say ‘Girls don’t do that.’ Or ‘That’s not something a girl would say in that situation. Even if I’m wrong, even if I get shut down, I know that I’ve done my part to get a woman’s voice out there.”

Isla Fisher

Isla thinks actresses are forced to take on similar empty roles: “I think there is a lack of quality roles for women in comedies. Most actresses get cast as the “eye-roller”/ “the serious one,” while men in comedies get to do all the fun, silly stuff and muck around. Sometimes you just have to search hard for a role or create one for yourself.”

Keira Knightley

Keira says that often she doesn’t have her voice heard on set and can’t improve her role. She has said she has found herself: “walking into a room and talking about why my character is saying this, but I’ll be talking about it to a room of five guys. I’ve lost most of the arguments.”

Rose Byrne

Rose says that it’s unfortunately difficult to find roles with real value: “I want to keep working as much as I can and take advantage of the opportunities that have opened up to me. I’ve spent a lot of time dealing with the reality that good roles are often very hard to find for women – sometimes I’ve found it frustrating to be offered the wife or the mother or girlfriend rather than the character that drives the story forward. I’m glad to be finally getting to do those roles. It’s worth the wait if you get to do something you love.”