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Zoe Kazan On Critiquing The Manic Pixie Dream Girl Trope In “Ruby Sparks”

Manic Pixie Rehab
Manic Pixie Dream Girl rehab is only for the most whimsical of cases. Read More »
Approval Matrix
Ranking the men of the manic pixie dream girl movies. Read More »
Manic Pixie Dream Guy
Whither the manic pixie dream guy? Read More »
Zoe Kazan photo

“Everybody is setting out to write a full character. It’s just that some people are limited in their imagination of a girl. [A character in "Ruby Sparks" named] Cal’s brother says that in the film: “You’ve written a girl, not a person.” I think defining a girl and making her lovable because of her music taste or because she wears cute clothes is a really superficial way of looking at women. I did want to address that. … I am definitely not interested in adding to the genre of Manic Pixie Dream Girl. I’m very happy to have this movie read as a critique of that, if that’s how you want to read it. It’s not how I wrote it — that was not my primary goal. But I really, really think it’s dangerous to reduce a person to an idea.”

– I had no opinion on Zoe Kazan before I saw a screening of her new movie “Ruby Sparks” last week but now I’m in love — in loooooove — with the actress and screenwriter. “Ruby Sparks” is the thinking woman’s summer must-see film for sure. Without giving too much of the plot away, it is about a writer named Calvin (played by Kazan’s real-life boyfriend Paul Dano) who pens a novel about a lovely young woman named Ruby, who magically appears in real life. “Ruby Sparks” fantastically critiques the manic pixie dream girl trope in way that’s satirical but not in-your-face. I love what Zoe Kazan says in this interview here, especially in the full context of the interview where she talks about how reducing a person to an idea is dangerous to a relationship, as well as a film. [Huffington Post]

Make Up For Ever Releasing Madonna’s Personalized Lipstick For The Unwashed Masses

Madonna Loves To Swirl
How Madonna encouraged the writer to try interracial dating. Read More »
Madonna Loves the Gays
She says she owes everything to the gay community. Read More »
  • Make Up For Ever made Madonna her very own high-pigment red lipstick called Aqua Rouge #8 for her MDNA world tour, which is now going to be available in stores this September. Madonna’s personal makeup artists Gina Brooke helped design the shade. [Racked]
  • Sofia Vergara tops the list of Forbes magazine’s highest paid actresses in Hollywood. [Betty Confidential]
  • Russell Brand told Howard Stern he was “really into the idea of marriage and having children” with ex-wife Katy Perry, lending support to the theory that they broke up because she wasn’t ready to have kids. [US Weekly]
  • Here’s that KISS/Hello Kitty toilet paper that you didn’t ask for. [The FW]
  • Gwyneth Paltrow is in talks to star in a film version of Blood, Bones and Butter, the memoir by chef Gabrielle Hamilton. [The Hollywood Reporter] Keep reading »

Kelly Ripa’s Husband Mark Consuelos Headed To Mental Institution (Just On “American Horror Story”!)

"Horror" Casting
American Horror Story
Who is coming and who is going on "American Horror Story" season two. Read More »
Let's Talk "Horror"
American Horror Story
An interview with Ryan Murphy, creator of "American Horror Story." Read More »
Morning Quickies
Justin Bieber Rolling Stone cover
Biebs is on the cover of Rolling Stone's August issue. Read More »
  • “American Horror Story” season two casting update! Mark Consuelos from “All My Children” — aka Mr. Kelly Ripa — is joining the cast. (You should have seen the face Amelia made when I told her this news.) Hottie Mark will play a mental institution patient named Spivey. Here are more deets on casting news for “American Horror Story”‘s second season.  [Celebrity Cafe]
  • Paparazzi who chased Justin Bieber on a Los Angeles highway at 80mph could be the first photogs caught under a new law that seeks to punish paps that endanger the lives of others while trying to get a shot. [PopCrush]
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt has ripped GQ magazine a new one for claiming in its cover story that drugs killed his older brother, Dan, in 2010. In an explanation on his website, JGL has said that his brother’s death was an “accident.” [TMZ]
  • Chocolate as a health food? Tell me more, please … [The FW] Keep reading »

Analysis Released On Status Of Women Of Color In The U.S.

Today's Lady News photo
  • The Center For American Progress has released an analysis on the status of women of color in the United States, which had some disconcerting findings, such as that WOC are more likely to occupy lower-paying jobs than women of other races, which leads to $434,000 in lost wages over a lifetime. Also, WOC make up 53 percent of the medically uninsured. [Madame Noire]
  • Female troops who were sexually assaulted at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, have taken the stand this week. [Washington Post]
  • The Mississippi Department of Health has inspected the state’s lone operating abortion clinic. It now has 10 days to issue findings that will determine if the clinic is allowed to stay open. [CBS News] Keep reading »

The Soapbox: Why I’m Disappointed That Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer Doesn’t Call Herself A Feminist

Meet Marissa Mayer
Marissa Mayer photo
Former Google VP Marissa Mayer is now Yahoo's new CEO. Read More »
On Feminist Judgement
What's feminist about judging other women's choices? Read More »
Diablo Cody On Feminists
The "Juno" writer/director has some choice words for her haters. Read More »
Marissa Mayer: Not A Feminist

Last week we learned that Marissa Mayer, former VP of Google, would be heading to Yahoo as its new CEO. She’s be the company’s first female CEO and probably the first-ever pregnant CEO of a Fortune 500 tech company. Even if you couldn’t care less about Yahoo, you probably thought to yourself “yay for the ladies!” even just a smidge.

Interestingly, now a statement that Mayer made while participating in PBS’s “Makers” series have come under scrutiny: how she does not label herself a feminist in part because she implies the term means a “militant drive” and a “chip on the shoulder.” Keep reading »

Tavi Is Meh About “Seventeen”‘s No Photoshop Pledge

Julie Meets Tavi
Julie Gerstein fan-girled out when she met Tavi at Fashion Week. Read More »
Tavi On Lana
Tavi Gevinson proves she's incredibly wise beyond her years. Read More »
Will Tavi write a book?
Tavi Gevinson may write a book about... being Tavi Gevinson. Read More »

“I think it’s great that these girls are taking action. I don’t know, however, that Photoshop makes a huge difference with the kind of models they use, or that there aren’t other parts of the magazine that contribute to the same issue. I’m sure most people don’t think as obsessively about stuff like the wording of a headline as I do, but the effects of headlines under the “health” section about your back-to-school body are still there. It took me a little bit once middle school started to realize that if I didn’t read Seventeen, I didn’t feel obligated to watch what I eat. Language is powerful, along with photos. …  [T]t’s not just about Photoshop — all kinds of components of a magazine help contribute to the feelings that might leave a reader with a negative body image.”

– Racked called up Tavi Gevinson of Rookie Mag to chat about Seventeen and how the mag’s website has seemingly stole Rookie’s “Ask A Grown Man” idea with a not-even-trying-to-be-different feature, “Ask An A-Lister.” Tavi ended up talking about Seventeen‘s recent pledge, following a petition with 84,000 signatures, to stop using Photoshop. (Teen Vogue followed suit soon after.) I’m somewhat less cynical than Tavi about Seventeen‘s Body Peace Treaty, but I also think she makes a fantastic point that images are only part of the problem. Language matters, too, and the way that magazines and other media outlets tell stories pertaining to women/girls and body image are equally important. Elsewhere in the interview Tavi says, “ Sometimes [Seventeen's] ‘embarrassing’ stories are literally about boys finding out that you have your period. I’m just tired of stigmatizing totally normal body stuff like that, which is already a little scary and weird to some girls.” Co-sign times 1000! [Racked]

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