Elle sat down with some of the best and brightest for its annual Women in Hollywood issue. Among those interviewed are Angela Bassett, Sarah Paulson, Shonda Rhimes, Mia Farrow, Keira Knightley, Charlize Theron, Yara Shahidi and Lady Gaga.
The women discussed life, love, work and more. Some of their most interesting and revealing remarks, below.
The 43-year-old Golden Globe star opened up about her career and her family: “I don’t have children; I’m not married. But I have a lot of intimate relationships—my nieces and nephews, and a wonderful circle of friends. I don’t see them enough. This idea that you can have it all is another thing to be challenged.”
She also said of her 75-year-old partner Holland Taylor: “I didn’t choose to fall in love with the person I fell in love with. But I think why it’s interesting to people is that on paper, it’s unconventional. For a person who might find themselves in a situation that they fear will be misperceived or judged, maybe they could see me living my life in a way that is authentic to me—just trying to be as real as possible. If that inspires anybody else, that can’t be a bad thing.”
The A Star is Born star opened up about success, love and family.
“Success tests relationships,” she said. “It tests families. It tests your dynamic with your friends. There is a price to stardom.” Gaga continued: “I can’t make music or act without using and accessing the pain that I have in my heart. I mean, what better place to put it? Otherwise, it’s of no good use.”
Mia Farrow talked enduring scandal (including her breakup with Woody Allen, which eventually involved her daughter Dylan accusing him of sexual assault and his eventual marriage to Farrow’s adopted daughter Soon-Yi). Of her current perspective on the #MeToo movement, she highlighter her past: “Oh, Lordy, I wish there were tapes,” she says. “The first really awful grope was a very famous head of a studio. I was 17. I was too embarrassed to even tell my mother.”
On Allen, she said: “it’s not all white or black. Otherwise you’d ask yourself what on earth you’re doing with that person for 10 minutes, let alone for 10 years.”
The Golden Globe and Emmy-winning mega-producer Shonda Rhimes discussed a sea change in the way women are treated and diversity is portrayed.
Rhimes said: “I don’t know if I can say there’s a measurable change. I mean, I don’t have stats, but it does feel like the air has changed. The attitudes have changed. The conversation has changed. I keep hearing people say they’re holding their breath, waiting for it all to pass. But they’ve been holding their breath for a long time, so it feels like we’re moving toward clear, true change in the way we behave.”
On inclusivity, she said: “When I started writing TV shows, I wanted to represent everybody, because it should look like the real world. It should feel normal when you turn on the television and see people who look like you.”
Elle will also celebrate the women at its annual Women in Hollywood event on Monday, Oct. 15, at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills. Mindy Kaling will emcee, and the ceremony will also feature Anita Hill, who will discuss the Hollywood Commission on Eliminating Sexual Harassment and Advancing Equality.