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Old 08-19-2015, 09:59 AM   #41
Geoff Alexander
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Default Re: Diablo Cody article

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Originally Posted by Danigirl View Post
Ok...getting back on track (or attempting to, anyway...)

Her background as a stripper certainly piqued people's interest. The press introduced her as "former exotic dancer Diablo Cody" repeatedly. I think she's earned her stripes through her writing talent. She wouldn't be where she's at if she had no talent to begin with.

I, too, am a stripper/screenwriter/actress. I feel that if I were to get recognized someday, it would be hopefully for the story I have to tell. Glad to see from her example that you can go from stripper to screenwriter successfully, as long as you do the work and you have the talent and tenacity to back youself up. It gives me hope.
You can go from any background to screenwriter, that's the beauty of it. There are barriers at every point, but there's no sign at the door that disqualifies you on the basis of something other than your work. That being said, personally, I wouldn't advertise the stripper element of your BG, or even the acting BG, but I could be totally wrong about that.
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Old 08-19-2015, 12:32 PM   #42
UnequalProductions
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Yes, of course, obviously I feel that I've somehow been "called out" by your incisive analysis.

The fact is, you can't even advance a consistent position in this conversation. You want to talk about Diablo Cody's appearance and the way she has been presented by media and dealt with within the industry but you don't want to talk about the way that other female screenwriters are represented. You want to talk about white male appearance and how that doesn't seem to impact their ability get work but you don't think there's any role to talk about female screenwriters and the the fact that the converse may be true. You claim that I have stated that female writers are getting ahead because of their looks, which is false. You think that it's "condescending" for me reference a New York Times article which showcases four women and presents them with a certain spin, i.e., they all share some pretty specific characteristics; young and attractive, and are posed and photographed in a certain way--apparently there were no women over forty and over 140 pounds working at the time. Yes, so condescending of me to expose you to that article.

You're either trolling or you are really confused about what is going on, which includes by the way your own posts.

If you want to try and call someone out for something, you might want to consider calling yourself out for your ridiculous approach to this discussion.
Look, all I've been responding to is your comment. You said that you think female screenwriters are on average more attractive than male screenwriters. Then you follow it up by saying you don't think they're getting ahead by their looks, but there may be a bias at work.

Is my interpretation of your original comment wrong?

The reason my opinion keeps shifting is that I'm trying to figure out why you brought this up, and I've done my best to try to admit when I misinterpreted your comment.

Do you think there's a bias towards Diablo Cody because she's attractive? That might get her more meetings, but it's not winning her an Oscar. Same goes for any of the women in the Fempire article.

"Hey, here are some extremely talented writers, but I'm going to point out that they're physically attractive." Why? What does this have to do with any conversation on a screenwriting forum?

I can understand the conversation about Cody's history as a stripper. It's relevant to her writing and the marketing of herself as a writer. We should all be tapping into our unique histories both on the page and in the room, but no one is attaching a headshot to their scripts.

Even if you were saying that being attractive might add to your self confidence in a room, I could see that as being relevant to the conversation.

But what's the point of bringing up your personal opinions of the attractiveness of a writer? Or female writers as a whole? And how does it help anyone trying to be a screenwriter?
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Old 08-19-2015, 03:28 PM   #43
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Sure. But... she wrote a book about being a stripper and it was published the same year Juno came out -- so the stripper angle was hers to begin with -- it's not like it was a secret, she used it as a marketing tool.
That's also what her blog was about. Prior to Juno, her writing identity and her stripping identity were very much wrapped up in each other. I think it's a mistake to think that the stripping, alone, drives (or initially drove) the fascination with her, though. It was the kind of writing she was doing about stripping that made her fascinating before she started selling screenplays about other things. It's a subtle difference but it's meaningful, IMO. It's not just, "Ooh, she used to be a stripper, look at that!" It was, "Look at the kind of writing she's done about her stripping career, isn't that interesting."
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Old 08-19-2015, 04:12 PM   #44
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Do you think there's a bias towards Diablo Cody because she's attractive? That might get her more meetings, but it's not winning her an Oscar. Same goes for any of the women in the Fempire article.
I think you're misinterpreting Geoff's comment. Not to speak for Geoff, but I don't think he's saying that a female writer's attractiveness is an asset that can overcome meager talent and effort.

I think it's that an unattractive or plain woman will find her appearance to be a LIABILITY. It's something that she has to overcome.

In essence, any writer who "makes it" needs talent and work ethic. But, unfortunately, for female writers it appears they also need to be attractive. And that's an issue that's reflected in our larger society.
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Old 08-19-2015, 07:11 PM   #45
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I think it's that an unattractive or plain woman will find her appearance to be a LIABILITY. It's something that she has to overcome.

I hope this is a joke.
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Old 08-20-2015, 09:09 AM   #46
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Google "Beauty Bias" and you'll find many articles referencing studies about it. Not surprising -- it's probably related to an old brain bias (in both men and women) for purposes of species propagation (beauty equals strength and health).

In most industries I've had access to, attractive tall men also seem to have an advantage. In one major corp I worked at, the higher the floor, the higher one was on the career ladder. It was hard for anyone to ignore that as you approached the top 5 floors, women and short men were getting off the elevator car before you entered top exec territory. People made jokes about it. Some days, as we stepped off, the only people remaining in the car were men well over six feet. And none of them could be accused of being ugly.

Here's the thing -- people will speak up about gender and racial bias. But who's going to say aloud, "My ugliness puts me at a disadvantage in this society!" even if it's true.
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Old 08-20-2015, 10:54 AM   #47
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Attractive people in general have an advantage in pretty much every aspect of life.

This is not a new or earth shattering concept.
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Old 08-20-2015, 12:27 PM   #48
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Default Re: Diablo Cody article

Great news; my chances of success just increased tenfold!
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Old 08-20-2015, 03:17 PM   #49
UnequalProductions
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Default Re: Diablo Cody article

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I hope this is a joke.
This was my original comment.
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Old 08-20-2015, 03:25 PM   #50
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Default Re: Diablo Cody article

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Google "Beauty Bias" and you'll find many articles referencing studies about it. Not surprising -- it's probably related to an old brain bias (in both men and women) for purposes of species propagation (beauty equals strength and health).

In most industries I've had access to, attractive tall men also seem to have an advantage. In one major corp I worked at, the higher the floor, the higher one was on the career ladder. It was hard for anyone to ignore that as you approached the top 5 floors, women and short men were getting off the elevator car before you entered top exec territory. People made jokes about it. Some days, as we stepped off, the only people remaining in the car were men well over six feet. And none of them could be accused of being ugly.

Here's the thing -- people will speak up about gender and racial bias. But who's going to say aloud, "My ugliness puts me at a disadvantage in this society!" even if it's true.
I agree that all of this is obviously true.

But this is a screenwriting forum. Where we're suppose to be supporting and helping each other become better at our craft. So what's the point of Geoff bringing it up the physical attractiveness of female writers?

Should we be telling aspiring female writers to focus on their looks?

Are we saying that if you lose a job to a female writer who is more physically attractive that we should blame it on that and not use it as motivation to improve our writing?

We should definitely NOT be telling women their less than perfect appearances are a LIABILITY they have to overcome.
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