The supposed issue revolves around the age difference at the time the movie was filmed between leading lady Laura Dern and leading man Sam Neill. According to an interview in the Sunday Times’ Culture section with the actor and actress, that’s now an example of the toxic patriarchy.
The Sunday Times noted that “Laura Dern was 23 when she starred in Jurassic Park with Sam Neill, who is 20 years older.”
I’ll admit to being completely confused by this. How is it the patriarchy to have a younger woman making millions of dollars to be a star in a movie that is co-starred by an older man? Is the suggestion here that she shouldn’t have ever been given the role? That seems rather silly and self-defeating. Of course, she’s only saying this 29 years later, after she’s been made fabulously wealthy by the long-running popularity of “Jurassic Park.”
Besides, when you are casting, you are casting for the part, not who the actor/actress may or may not be in real life. On the other side of this debate, older women are often cast to play younger women. Is that out of bounds now? And as to Dern, she played a character who was an accomplished P.hD in her field. She presented as someone in her early 30s in the movie, both in her stated experience and her appearance. Even still, in the film itself, Dern wasn’t even in a relationship with Neill’s character.
So again, what exactly is the problem here? It’s now the patriarchy when a younger woman is cast to play opposite an older man? Dern cites this “moment of cultural awareness,” but I’d suggest this is just the ultimate example of inventing victimhood out of thin air. A 23-year-old getting rich starring in a movie is not a victim.
Considering that Cary Grant was 58 and Audrey Hepburn was 33 when they filmed Charade in 1963, better buy a copy on Blu-Ray before that once-classic film gets memory-holed as well.