London: A survey has found that more than half of filmgoers are tired of seeing older women portrayed as “sexless grandmothers”.
A survey of more than 2,000 filmgoers by the UK Film Council found over 60 percent feel older women are not portrayed as having sexual needs or desires in film.
While men are routinely seen seducing women 20 or 30 years their junior on screen, older women are seldom seen doing the same thing.
Despite this half the older women surveyed said they are more than comfortable seeing themselves as being “Cougars” or attracting younger men.
The survey found seven in ten people feel that film tends to glamorise young women and older characters, especially older women, tend to be significantly under-represented.
The phenomenon is also happening in television.
But film audiences agree they want to see older women in “sexier” roles, or simply portrayed in their real light.
Jenny Eclair, the actress and comedienne, said older women deserve to be represented truthfully on screen, and that the industry is missing the opportunity to entertain a huge audience who feel under-represented.
“Sadly this research demonstrates that, even in our culture of supposed diversity, film – one of the key cultural mediums – is still misrepresenting large proportions of UK film goers,” the Telegraph quoted her as saying.
“The industry needs to think carefully about how it portrays diverse groups – including older women – who are frustrated at still being portrayed in desexualised, stereotypical roles.
“The industry is in danger of continuing this misrepresentation where there is clearly the opportunity at hand to change opinion for good,” she added.