November 11th, 2009
04:21 PM ET

Jessica Biel: Where are the good scripts for women?

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Jessica Biel doesn't have a tough time playing strong characters, but she does have a tough time finding great scripts written for women.

The actress talked to me about the challenges of finding those great roles in Hollywood during the promotion blitz for her new animated flick "Planet 51." In the film, she plays a teenage girl who is fiercely independent and questions authority when the government tries to convince everyone that aliens are taking over.

It's a strong role she relished playing. "I wanted to be in this movie  because I liked the idea that the character was a strong woman that young girls could look up to as a role model," she said.

But Biel also confided in me that although this script was a blessing, it was also a rarity. "It's rare to see good scripts that show good strong women. In Hollywood the number of well-written and great scripts which show women in strong positive roles are rare. On top of that there are so many talented women and there are not enough projects for everyone to really blossom. It's so disappointing that there isn't more material out there for actresses."

Lets hope that changes for Biel and the rest of the actresses in Hollywood!

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soundoff (23 Responses)
  1. MelinLA

    Okay Ms. Biel's assistant, since you have been "amused" and have cataloged as much Biel greatness as you can muster....

    1. She is very beautiful, it's just her narcissism that makes her ugly. Go back and read the articles- she talks about her beauty endlessly. She doesn't put anything of substance out there and doesn't speak intelligently about the material. She really doesn't have anything to say. Wait, she does talking about her fear of aging, how much she works out and what food she eats to remain healthy. And, of course how her beauty really prevents her from getting good roles. Did I mention that?
    2. Never heard of the Make A Difference Network. In what interviews has she mentioned this? Wasn't in Vogue, wasn't in Bazaar, wasn't in Elle, wasn't in Marie Claire. Is she even involved anymore?
    3. What does she "give"? What charities that Timberlake ISN'T involved with?
    4. 7th Heaven. She had a horrible attitude toward her producers and the network. Acted out and did everything to be let out of her contract. She posed topless in Gear magazine photo shoot to try to irk the producers so much they would let her out of the contract. And they did. Completely ungracious and set the tone for what people in the industry think of her. She believed her own hype.
    5. In articles she's said that she wonders what other actresses are doing and why didn't she know about it? Why didn't she get the material and get a shot? I can imagine her calling her agent or manager and alternating whining and being b****y. Studios make a short list of actors and then send the scripts out to them. She is not on those short lists. She is not "A" list because she does not bring audiences in.

    November 13, 2009 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Laura


    Jessica Biel does a lot with different charities and launched the Make The Difference network. She certainly gives a lot. Also, she got her start on television with the hit series 7th Heaven.

    She had a great role in the recent British comedy "Easy Virtue", which had a short but successful run in the US. She really carried that movie, and got raving reviews.

    People are so negative about her, it's rather amusing....she puts a lot of us normal people to shame in the looks department, yet she is criticized for not being the most beautiful person on earth. I mean, how dare she. *rolls eyes*

    November 13, 2009 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  3. bulandawaaz

    MelinLA... DITTO man, exactly as you said it...

    November 12, 2009 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Mirka

    MelinLA, your comments are exactly right.

    Biel is not overly beautiful, average actually when it comes to Hollywood. As one smart man said...there are no bad scripts, just bad acting/actresses. She truly should learn from the real actresses who do their job and know how to do it. That "I'm so hot" she's been talking about for REALLY 5 years in a row is extremely stupid of her.

    If you don't know how to do your job maybe you should think about changing careers....Starbux right by my house is hiring 🙂

    November 12, 2009 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Rudy

    The good scripts are given to the good actresses!

    November 12, 2009 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  6. MelinLA

    Strong and independent is a turn off? I laughed out loud. Wow. People aren't calling Biel or women in general b***hes because they are strong and independent. Think you missed the mark by leagues and are very confused about what it means to be a lady.

    Women acting like men in films? Like what exactly? I am a tad uneasy about what you think are poor gender roles, women acting like men.

    Back to the topic- Biel. I agree with Sarah and others. Biel should split her career between Hollywood films and indies. Should focus on helping others and reading a book or two. She should just "zip it" in the meantime. And she should take a lesson from those women who do have the kinds of careers that she wants.

    November 12, 2009 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Barbara

    Is she really that beautiful?? She's definitely not that talented.

    November 12, 2009 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Cate

    Word sister friend!!!!

    November 12, 2009 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
  9. sparrow

    actually there are too many scripts already showcasing females in poor gender roles, acting like men. young girls don't need to look up to women who think they are men. this is a disservice to young girls who need actual female role models to show them that being a lady is NOT a bad thing. and that being "strong and independent" is a turn off to most men. why would any man want to date a b***h when there are women out there who will need him and depend on him.

    November 12, 2009 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Alice

    I think that Naomi Watts, Kate Winslett, Anne Hathaway, Cate Blanchett, Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron, Meryl Streep, Angelina Jolie, Judi Dench, Helena Bonham Carter, and Renée Zellweger (just to name a few) would disagree with Ms. Biel about the lack of good parts for women in Hollywood.

    I have to agree with what many others have said : There are great parts for women out there. They just go to better actresses with better resumes. When an actress does nothing but B movies, she won't ever get offered anything else. Acting skills and how easy that actress is to work with are also factors. I think that Ms. Biel's "I'm too beautiful" statement is rather insulting to working actresses and is extremely vain. I was hoping that she was joking when she said that, but I don't think so.

    November 12, 2009 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Sarah

    The reality is that a great deal of Hollywood writing is formula, and the majority of formula isn't that exciting or advancing for female actresses. It's a wise idea to split your career between major studio pictures and smaller independent films... this is what Cameron Diaz does. It's a good way to remain true to your craft and sustain your career at the same time.

    November 12, 2009 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
  12. kathryn

    i'm going to have to agree, i haven't read or heard her say anything intelligent maybe ever, all of her movies suck so i'm really not surprised no one is offering her good scripts. if she only had a brain...

    November 12, 2009 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Steve

    When someone confides something, it's telling something confidentially. How does a CNN reporter write the line, "Biel also confided in me" for all the world to see? That reporter wanted to look like Biel's friend rather than telling us Biel's opinion as if to say, "Oh, my buddy Jessica confided in me"

    I don't often comment but in this context, that one word seems very self-serving and beneath a CNN reporter.

    November 12, 2009 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Ben K

    Well, unfortunately a majority of the good scripts are shot down before they get to actresses or their agents, the rest go to actresses who can actually act. When Biel gets to Watts' level and still isn't getting work, then she can talk.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
  15. Cincy

    I glad a young women is speaking out about good roles for women.
    I'm so sick and tired of women getting buck naked and roling around on the ground or wearing a$$ high dressess, running in heels in movies. Where are the good movies?

    November 12, 2009 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  16. O'Dell

    I think Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, Glenn Close, Sigourney Weaver, and Cate Blanchette, to name a few, are evidence that good scripts for women do exists in Hollywood. That said, I think there is just a general lack of good roles for anyone in Hollywood theses days.

    November 12, 2009 at 7:44 am | Report abuse |
  17. Nora

    Meryl Streep seems to get good scripts. Ann Hathaway seems to be doing alright as well. There are good scripts out for women. There is also a double standard across the board for jobs pertaining to men and women. Maybe she should try Television. Or getting a life outside of the hollywood scene. A cause that helps others may change how others perceive her depth of narcissim. I perceive a strong sense of "entitlement" from this person. Who owes her anything?

    November 12, 2009 at 2:26 am | Report abuse |
  18. Jim Sailors

    Jessica just stood out in "The Illusionist", and beauty is not bad, and
    she is my favorite. And I agree with her, the good strong women scripts
    are rare.

    November 12, 2009 at 1:17 am | Report abuse |
  19. Hank Moody

    She should look at her resume which includes the following "good" scripts:

    1) Stealth
    2) Blade: Trinity
    3) I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry
    4) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (not the original)

    Just finished filming the A-Team. Give me a break.

    November 11, 2009 at 10:53 pm | Report abuse |
  20. MelinLA

    In EVERY single article interviewing Ms. Biel over the last 5 years or so, she bemoans her incredible beauty and how it prevents her from getting good roles. She can't come up with anything else to talk about in the interviews, EVER. The masses LOVE to look at beautiful people, so her argument falls a little flat. What IS stunning is her lack of intellect and narcissism. Blinding actually. Nobody in LA wants to deal with a stupid, vain and self-centered actress when there are far more talented actresses without all the baggage. It's really as simple as that.

    November 11, 2009 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  21. LittlePooandPeeforXmas

    Where are the good scripts for women?


    Not for you!!! ☼

    November 11, 2009 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Lardo

    lol i totally second Hank's comment: the better scripts are just going to better actresses

    November 11, 2009 at 6:23 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Hank Moody

    Someone should tell Ms. Biel that good scripts for women exist; they're just going to better actresses

    November 11, 2009 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |

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