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Many of us by now have noticed the ONSLAUGHT of reboots which have come our way. Between the incessant Marvel movies and comic book sequels which literally will not stop coming, the millions of Spiderman flicks, not to mention the ridiculous amount of Bond movies (25 to be exact).

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Yes, 25 movies about the same man doing the same uber-masculine assassinations and the same women dying for him and the same villains again and again and again. *Sigh* Even Daniel Craig agrees that good old James is a misogynist.

The live-action remakes of every single classic Disney animation, the TV reboots of our favourite characters for no actual reason and the revivals of our childhood bands. It begs the question, is the entertainment industry just profiting off of our nostalgia? Most definitely, yes.

When it comes to the Spice Girls, Westlife or Take That, by all means they are welcomed back with open arms.

Yet, when it comes to cinema, which is literally CRYING OUT for representation and new voices which are demanding to be heard, why are they using the same old formulas?

Art is supposed to be unique, a form of expression. Not recycled like old Halloween costumes that don't fit anymore but you're just gagging to feel 18 again. Back when life was more about what alcohol to buy for pre-drinks and not what bills you have to pay first so you can survive as a full-grown adult. *shudders*

The point is: a new Batman/Joker combo is not cinematic gold, for God’s sake. A new Pirates of the Caribbean written by the Deadpool duo will not shake the earth.

Recent groundbreaking genre favourites such as A Quiet Place, Get Out and Moonlight have pushed the boundaries of cinematic territory and have told stories from new and vital points of view, so why can't Hollywood give more opportunities to scripts, directors and voices like these?

News recently broke that Shrek, one of the most popular animated franchises of all time, is getting a reboot (pause for gasps).

Those of us who grew up with the infamous green ogre and his hilarious sidekick, Donkey, will most likely shudder at the thought of Hollywood studios replacing a beloved film of our youth with a facade, a copy which can never truly replace the original.

Others will delight in the nostalgia of creating more content surrounding the comedic protagonist and his fairytale friends, especially since the man behind the reboot, as well as the revival of Puss in Boots, is Chris Meledandri.

Known as the mastermind of the Despicable Me movies (and creator of the minions, which have literally overtaken the world and internet memes), Meledandri has been tasked by Universal Pictures with finding some fresh storylines to being the lovable ogre into the modern time. I say modern time as if Shrek is donkeys-years old (yes, I made a donkey joke. Deal with it).

Shrek was originally released back in 2001, making it barely 17 years old. While a lot has happened in technology and film-making in this time, does it really seem necessary to bring back a franchise which has really run its course? After all, Shrek the Fourth only entered cinemas in 2010, and left much to be desired.

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Studios are so obsessed with maintaining popularity and success of these franchises, that often they completely ruin the essence of what made it loved by audiences in the first place, in this case: comedic integrity.

I mean, a storyline about an ogre defending his swamp in a land of fairytale creatures, voiced by Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Antonio Banderas and Eddie Murphy? The person who successfully pitched that idea must be incredibly rich by now.

At least Meledandri has the good sense to keep the original vocal performances:

“When you look back on those vocal performances they’re awesome, and while you certainly could make a case for a complete reinvention, I find myself responding to my own nostalgic feelings of wanting to go back to those characterizations,” explains Meledandri.

“The challenge for us has been to find something that really does feel like it’s not simply yet another film in a series of sequels.” Good luck with that, Mr. Director Whose Film Company Has Just Released A Remake Of The Iconic The Grinch. You paint a highly believable portrait. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Hollywood remakes have been saturating cinema over the last decade, and there are arguments to be made for both sides of the tide. If a remake is done right, à la A Star is Born, something special can happen.

This is usually a result of some newfangled aspect of the film however, a tweak or drastic change which brings the piece back to life but also gives it a platform in its own right.

Lady Gaga, for example, plays the role of struggling artist Ally in a way that makes it impossible to compare her to Barbara Streisand. The songs are also freshly crafted, and impactful in their raw energy, partially due to Bradley Cooper’s directorial talent and surprising talent as a singer.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Formerly known as an actor, his transition into musicality and the directorial chair allows the film to reach new heights, as if feels as if we are being introduced to someone who we’ve never really known at all.

The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina has also achieved phenomenal success, however there is next to nothing about the show which resembles its predecessor, and it is stand-alone as a result, especially with its sense of ‘woke’ teen angst which is captured almost to perfection.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Yet the majority of remakes are arguably just major Hollywood studios tapping into the nostalgia of audiences who are ready and willing to return to the cinema seat to catch any glimpse of their favourite childhood character or storyline in action.

Certain remakes adapt the trend with refreshing results; such as the Fargo reboot which was recreated as a mini-series and is widely well-reviewed. An audience is more likely to watch something which they are already familiar with, and if the sense of familiarity is matched with something genuinely unique, truly excellent cinematic gold can occur.

Classics are classics for a reason, and taking the formula and twisting it to adapt to a new generation often leads to disastrous consequences. The remake of Psycho, the Great Gatsby (controversial, most people loved the grandeur of Baz Luhrmann yet the power of the written words were essentially erased) and Footloose, for example, need to die a slow death.

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The endless sequels are also a problem, I mean PLEASE learn to leave it alone. Just because the movie was good does not mean it has to be continued and drawn out until the life is sapped out of it.

If there is a new technology, a new actor or actress or director, or scriptwriter who are talented enough to reuse old material and revitalise it, by all means, go ahead. Yet the magic of the true classics cannot be forgotten.

The day the news breaks that the Harry Potter franchise is getting a remake, for example, you will find this writer in a pool of her own tears, echoing the chant; “YOU CAN’T DO THIS TO ME!” on repeat. Don’t judge. Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint were the heroes of my youth, the faces which encapsulated the characters I had fallen in love with page by page.

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Transforming the series would simply remind me that I am now old enough for my childhood characters to be replaced and made into something new and alien altogether. If they even DREAM of touching perfection like Back to the Future or The Godfather, there will be hell to pay from the ever-protective fanbases.

The love most people harbour for that first spark of a film or character which had never been seen before is difficult to rearrange. There are an infinite number of voices in cinema which have yet to be heard; only now are women gaining access to cinematography, directorial roles, production roles and script-writing responsibilities.

Only now are people of different ethnic backgrounds, diverse economic circumstances, sexual orientations having their voices heard. Can you imagine how many stories they have to tell?

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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For so long, only the powerful were given the chance to create movies. Creating new formulas which give other people a change to feel represented and tell their own stories would revolutionise cinema.

So before we rush to discuss which man will be chosen as the next Bond, which Disney film will be recreated, or which superhero will once again be given a new face, why not look to those who haven’t been given a face, or a voice in cinema?

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, as the phrase goes, but authenticity is the greatest form of art.  

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Jessica Alba – entrepreneur, mum, actor and wife – is certainly is a busy woman.

And now she has given a glimpse into her home life by posing on the cover of Parents magazine alongside her fab brood – husband Cash Warren and kids; 10-year-old Honour, seven-year-old Haven and baby Hayes, who turns one on New Years Eve. 

She opened up about returning to her acting roots in the #MeToo movement era in Hollywood. 

She said, ''I'm getting back to acting because it is my first love and is part of my identity. Hollywood’s different now from when I semi-retired 10  years ago.''

She continued, ''there is a new awareness of how important is for women to be paid well and to be represented in front of, but also behind the camera. The #MeToo movement, for all of the heartache and trauma that it has churned up, enlightened people.''

She went on, ''for L.A.’s Finest, I did not even think about what a man would be paid. I said, ‘This is what I am worth.’ Gab and I know our value, and we are lucky to be comfortable enough that we could have walked away if we had to.''

Jessica also spoke about how she juggles motherhood wth her bust working schedule.

She spoke about how she brought one of her kids with her on a business trip to Milan.

She said, ''we went 2 days early so we could have together time. When I had meetings, she would wait for me in another conference room. I cannot be at every school drop-off and pick-up, but I am showing her my time’s valuable and that she has real value to me. I also want her to see my work is important and that I am trying my best to make a difference, and maybe she will absorb it.''

It sounds like her kids are lucky to have a mum like her. 

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Speaking at the Rome Film Festival, actor Cate Blanchett joined in the conversation about straight actors taking on the roles of gay characters.

Cate, who played the titular role in Todd Haynes' Carol, said that she was asked more questions about her sexuality than ever before when she took on the role of the lesbian character.

She explains that many interviewers had asked her or implied as to whether having a lesbian experience was needed to understand such a role.

Cate said that this goes against the whole point of acting, which is essentially pretending to be someone else. 

She said, ''it also speaks to something that I’m quite passionate about in storytelling generally, but in film specifically, is that film can be quite a literal medium.''

She continued, ''and I will fight to the death for the right to suspend disbelief and play roles beyond my experience. I think reality television and all that that entails had an extraordinary impact, a profound impact on the way we view the creation of character.''

Hollywood has been criticised for giving straight actors roles portraying LGBT characters in the past before and Cate believes that there is a problem with this. 

She explains, ''I think it provides a lot of opportunity, but the downside of it is that we now, particularly in America, I think, we expect and only expect people to make a profound connection to a character when it’s close to their experience.''

Cate hopes that more films exploring gay characters get the go-ahead as getting Carol made was not easy. 

She says that, ''the film, I think now would be made in a heartbeat, but eight years ago, it was a very difficult film to get up.''

She continued, ''two women, both of whom are of lesbian-ish persuasion in the 1950's, which is like ‘who wants to go and see that? Only 12-year-old boys go to movies.' Thank goodness we’re changing the demographic of the critics who write for Rotten Tomatoes.”

Gwan Cate, you tell 'em. 

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Simon Cowell, the British music mogul, television king, and the former Mr Nasty of talent shows, is officially a 'star' in his own right. 

Simon received his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame yesterday and was obviously chuffed with the whole thing. 

Simon basked in the spotlight as he reflected on his career, which spans three decades, and his time  as a reality show judge, record producer and creator of long-running franchises "The X Factor," "America's Got Talent" and "Britain's Got Talent".

"If anyone says fame is a bad thing, I don't know what you're talking about. It's the best thing in the world,'' the 58-year-old said

Simon shot to mainstream fame in 2001 when he became a judge on one of the pioneering talent shows, Pop Idol, which gave Will Young and Gareth Gates their big breaks and gave birth to the shows we know and love like American Idol, The X Factor and Britain/America's Got Talent. 

He started his speech off with a typical Simon joke, ''why did this take so long? I’m kidding''

He went on to explain how he was a huge fan of America TV and movies growing up

''It is so surreal I cannot tell you. Lauren, you’ve been my rock for the past few years. Put up with everything I put up with, '' he addressed his girlfriend of five years and mother of his four-year-old son, Eric. 

''I was also thinking about today was who would have got a bigger kick out of this? My mom and dad. And they’re not here, but I have a feeling are looking down.''

His many protegees have been coming out with kind words as he accepts this honour.

He was accompanied by Kelly Clarkson, the first winner of American Idol.

She gushed about his talent for spotting authentic people with real talent. 

"He appreciates you being yourself, and that's very rare. In this industry I think people just want you to fit in to something," the Grammy-winning singer said.

He was joined at the unveiling by "America's Got Talent" judges Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel and Mel B, British "X Factor" winner Leona Lewis and One Direction's Louis Tomlinson. 

Congrats Si, you've earned it!

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Some women in the public eye achieve phenomenal success, yet still, end up infinitely tied to a narrative that reduces or demeans their accomplishments.

Actress Jennifer Aniston is one of these women. It doesn't appear to matter that she is one of the most prominent women working in Hollywood, one of considerable influence; the media seem fit to think her worthy of nothing more than tabloid fodder.  This is the woman who was left "broken-hearted" and "childless" after golden boy Brad Pitt "dumped" her for Angelina Jolie (she had the last laugh though) and then again with her ex-husband Justin Theroux. "Poor Jen!" is what the world cried. Alone again. And still with no children. 

It never gets mentioned that it was perhaps Jen who chose to end her marriage to Theroux or, her decision to not have children – something that has stigmatised her for her entire career – was due to deeply personal reasons and not because she was selfish and career-obsessed. 

 

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In a new interview with InStyle, she addresses this obsession by the media, in her most candid interview yet.

"It's pretty crazy. The misconceptions are "Jen can't keep a man," and "Jen refuses to have a baby because she's selfish and committed to her career." Or that I'm sad and heartbroken. First, with all due respect, I'm not heartbroken," she said. 

The fact that women are expected to make marriage and children a priority in life is something that the media – and everyone else – latches onto, particularly if they decide to reject this route in life. Aniston identifies with this stereotyping, and says that the insensitivity in such assumptions makes it even harder for women to tell their own story.    

"Those are reckless assumptions. No one knows what’s going on behind closed doors. No one considers how sensitive that might be for my partner and me. They don’t know what I’ve been through medically or emotionally. There is a pressure on women to be mothers, and if they are not, then they’re deemed damaged goods. Maybe my purpose on this planet isn’t to procreate. Maybe I have other things I’m supposed to do?"

And by keeping this "Poor Jen" narrative going, all we are suggesting is that she has failed deeply in some way. Remembering that we don't know anything about the ins and outs of the circumstances that lead to her marriage ending or her decision to not have children, no paper seems to ever suggest that this is a woman taking charge of her own destiny. The headlines suggest that she is a very rich and famous spinster, and to reduce her accomplishments to this is deeply insulting. 

 

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"Women are picked apart and pitted against one another based on looks and clothing and superficial stuff," she continues mentioning sexism in her industry. "When a couple breaks up in Hollywood, it’s the woman who is scorned. The woman is left sad and alone. She’s the failure. F that. When was the last time you read about a divorced, childless man referred to as a spinster?"

"In my personal experience, I've been treated worse verbally and energetically by some women in this industry," she said of her experiences with harassment in Hollywood. 

In an elegant op-ed in the Huffington Post last year, she also addressed this topic. “We don’t need to be married or mothers to be complete. We get to determine our own ‘happily ever after’ for ourselves.”   

 

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But even though she keeps saying it, we keep dismissing her. We keep demeaning her worth, her accomplishments because she lacks a ring on her finger or a baby and those (admittedly adorable) Instagram announcements that come with them.

Jen deserves better. She doesn't want or need our sympathy. She doesn't need us to obsess (because it's generally women that do, not men) over whether she'll return to Brad to mend her supposedly broken heart (she won't). What she needs is to be recognised as being a woman whose life accomplishments are worth more than who she decided to marry. 

She thrived when her supposed golden boy and Prince Charming disappeared; she never needed rescuing.  And she doesn't need anymore I'm sorrys.      

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2017 served as a vital turning point in exposing the widespread nature of sexual harassment in society.

The movement had its own hashtag, #MeToo, the iconic two words that helped multitudes to speak out.

It seems that 2018 has already replaced #MeToo with a different, yet still so necessary, rallying cry: #TimesUp.

300 women in the entertainment industry banded together and wrote a letter of solidarity, which was published in the New York Times and Spanish language paper La Opinión.

Among those involved are Reese Witherspoon, America Ferrera and Shonda Rhimes.

Actress Amber Tamblyn described the open letter as a 'call to arms', letting society know that sexual harassment in the workplace will no longer be tolerated.

'To every woman employed in agriculture who has had to fend off unwanted sexual advances from her boss, every housekeeper who has tried to escape an assaultive guest, every janitor trapped nightly in a building with a predatory supervisor….we stand with you.'

'We support you,' the letter reads.

In the open letter, they also thanked the women of the Farm Worker's Union, who reached out to support them in the fight against sexual harassment.

It is a fight that has proven difficult and lengthy.

The piece cites the underrepresentation of women in positions of power for why sexual misconduct has been allowed to continue for such a very long time.

 

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'The struggle for women to break in, to rise up the ranks and to simply be heard and acknowledged in male-dominated workplaces must end; time’s up on this impenetrable monopoly,' they wrote.

The Time's Up initiative has its own website, with a 'Know Your Rights' section to help those who find themselves being sexually harassed in the workplace.

Of course, reporting sexual harassment is a legal process, and navigating the legal system can be costly. However, Time's Up are working to help those who are financially disadvantaged.

They have a GoFundMe, which has raised over $13 million (over €10.7 million) so far in order to 'provide subsidized legal support to women and men who have experienced sexual harassment, assault, or abuse in the workplace'.

It is so heartening and empowering to see these privileged women working to help their sisters.

We definitely agree with them: time's up.

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The uncovering of Harvey Weinstein's sexual crimes in October of this year laid the entertainment industry bare.

For decades it seems, Hollywood has been a breeding ground for sexual predators and miscreants.

And it's an unfortunate truth, but for every person who rightfully places blame at the predator's feet, someone else is ready to place it at the victim's.

This reaction is all the more damaging when women hold other women accountable for the misconduct of men, as Pamela Anderson appeared to do during a recent interview with NBC.

Speaking to Megyn Kelly, the former Baywatch star, who has been candid about her own experience of sexual violence as a child and adolescent, said she subsequently avoided dangerous situations by employing some 'common sense."

"I learned never to put myself in those situations again,” she said. “When I came to Hollywood, of course, I had a lot of offers to do private auditions and things that make absolutely no sense. Just common sense."

"Don’t go into a hotel room alone. If someone answers a door in a bathrobe, leave. Things that are common sense. But I know Hollywood is very seductive and people want to be famous and sometimes you think you’re going to be safe with an adult in the room."

Alluding to certain individuals within the entertainment industry, Pamela suggested that those who fell foul did not properly heed warnings.

"I think it was common knowledge that certain producers and certain people in Hollywood are people to avoid, privately. You know what you’re getting into when you go to a hotel room alone."

Unsurprisingly, the Canadian star has faced serious backlash on Twitter in the wake of the interview, with one social media user writing: "Here’s a very stupid woman saying very stupid things about very brave women."

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The onslaught of horror stories emerging from Hollywood in recent weeks has given Black Swan actress, Natalie Portman, pause for thought.

Initially grateful she hadn't experienced the violence and degradation endured by many women within the entertainment industry, the 36-year-old actress slowly realised that she had, in actual fact, been subject to various forms of threat and manipulation over the course of her career.

Speaking at the Vulture Festival in Los Angeles, the Oscar-winning actress discussed the recent controversies before providing an insight into her experience as a female in Hollywood.

"When I heard everything coming out, I was like, wow, I'm so lucky that I haven't had this," she began.

"And then, on reflection, I was like, okay, definitely never been assaulted, definitely not, but I've had discrimination or harassment on almost everything I've ever worked on in some way."

With more and more women coming forward with their stories of sexual assault and rape, Natalie initially found it hard to place herself within the culture of misogyny, but soon realised she had been exploited many times, although not to the same extent as her peers.

"I went from thinking I don't have a story to thinking, Oh wait, I have 100 stories. And I think a lot of people are having these reckonings with themselves, of things that we just took for granted as like, this is part of the process."

Natalie went onto to tell the audience about an incident with a film producer which left her feeling fearful and manipulated.

Having been invited to take a flight with him, Natalie recalled: "I showed up and it was just the two of us, and one bed was made on the plane."

After communicating her discomfort at the dynamic, Natalie explained that the incident did not escalate, but certainly had an effect on her confidence.

"Nothing happened. I was not assaulted. I said, 'This doesn't make me comfortable' and that was respected but was super not OK. That was really unacceptable and manipulative. I was scared."

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Hundreds of people took to the streets of Hollywood this weekend to show support for the victims of sexual misconduct.

Inspired by the hugely successful #MeToo Twitter campaign, men and women marched along Hollywood Boulevard and the Walk of Fame, in a effort to combat a “culture of sexual abuse” in the entertainment industry.

The demonstration follows a number of allegations made against prominent figures in Hollywood including Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, and most recently, comedian Louis C.K.

According to Sky News, Tara McNamarra, a 21-year-old protester at the march said: “I've been sexually assaulted multiple times throughout my life.”

"It's affected me in every aspect of my life."

#MeToo is the brainchild of social activist, Tarana Burke, who created the hashtag in the wake of the Weinstein allegations.

It was later popularised on social media by actress, Alyssa Milano, who shared the message with her Twitter followers.

Ahead of Sunday march, Tarana wrote on Facebook: “For every Harvey Weinstein, there's a hundred more men in the neighbourhood who are doing the exact same thing.”

“What we're seeing, at least for now, is a unity of survivors, a community of survivors that have grown out of this #MeToo viral moment, that I'm just hoping and praying that we can sustain.”

Organisers say they hope the march will help to unite survivors of sexual assault and encourage more victim to tp talk about their experiences.

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As more and more men and women come forward to share their experiences of sexual abuse and harassment in Hollywood, a resurfaced news article from the 1940s shows that this not a new issue.

An image of the 1945 article, first published in The Mirror, began circulating online after it was shared on Twitter by British concert pianist, James Rhodes.

It reports how Irish-born actress, Maureen O'Hara, accused a Hollywood producer of calling her a “cold potato without sex appeal” because she refused to have have sex with him.

“I'm so upset,” she told The Mirror.

“I am ready to quit Hollywood. It's got so bad I hate to come to work in the morning.”

She went on to explain how producers and directors had made attempts to damage her reputation because she turned them down.

“I'm a helpless victim of a Hollywood whispering campaign. Because I don't let the producer and director kiss me every morning or let them paw me they have spread around town that I am not a woman, that I am a cold piece of marble statuary.”

In 2004, she told The Daily Telegraph how standing up for herself harmed her career.

“I wouldn't throw myself on the casting couch, and I know that cost me parts. I wasn't going to play the whore. That wasn't me.” 

Maureen died on October 24, 2015, at the age of 95. She is best known for her roles in The Quiet Man, Miracle on 34th Street and The Parent Trap.

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Over the course of the last month, Hollywood's seedy underbelly has been laid bare after dozens of brave men and women have come forward with stories of harassment, abuse, assault and rape at the hands of some of the industry's biggest names.

As the weeks go on, more and more Hollywood heavy-hitters have decided to open up about the reality of being part of the industry, and the latest to have her say is Transformers star, Megan Fox.

Speaking to Hong Kong magazine, Prestige, the mother-of-three explained that the behind-the-scenes dynamic can have a detrimental effect on those who seek to make their career in movies.

"There are some very dark, negative things that go on on-set, between actors or between actors and directors — specifically to actresses — that we have to go through," Megan told the publication.

"There's no morality or integrity within the studio system. It’s completely about greed."

The 31-year-old actress admits that an actor's self-worth is often broken down during shooting, saying: "People have to go through this crap over and over again because your humanity isn’t even recognised. You’re an object, a means to an end."

"It creates a lot of emotional trauma," she added before explaining that the wellbeing of a star is rarely considered if it negatively impacts production.

Using on-set injuries as an example, Megan explained that asking for shooting to be temporarily stopped is almost unheard of, explaining: "You can’t shut down a movie set  – it’s $2 million a day halted – even though insurance covers it."

"We usually fight through the injuries. As long as your face looks OK, they don’t care and they want you to keep shooting anyway," she added.

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Since the creation of the Hollywood machine, we've known that women have had to fight for both the recognition and roles they deserve.

Paid less than their male counterparts. subject to more intense scrutiny and battling an industry which rarely celebrate the older female, women in Hollywood have to grow a thick skin in order to survive the revolving door system.

And if women do seek to have their voices heard? They're swiftly dubbed 'divas' by industry insiders  – something Blake LIvely addressed in a recent interview.

Speaking to People, the 30-year-old actress admits that fear for her burgeoning career stopped her from speaking up at certain times.

"As a woman, you’re afraid of a label you may acquire by demanding fair treatment for yourself that you know that you’ve earned," she explained.

"I think that sometimes you’re not encouraged to stand up for yourself," Blake added.

“It doesn’t even mean in really dramatic ways,” she added. “That just means that if you’re working too many hours, or you aren’t being paid what someone else at your work level is being paid, or if you’re being treated differently than someone else on the crew, or whoever."

Acutely aware that challenging the norm left her vulnerable to criticism, Blake remained stoic when observing the ins and outs of an industry she joined at just 10-years-old.

"I didn’t feel like I could fight for myself in the same way, because I was afraid of coming across as a diva or difficult or demanding," Blake admitted.

Interestingly, Blake admitted she had no trouble challenging injustices which didn't directly effect her – an approach she wished she could have applied to herself.

"I’d encourage myself to love myself and fight for myself, as hard as I fought for other people," she says of her younger self.

Oh, and one more thing while we have you! Don't forget that you can catch up on all your favourite shows for free for a month right here, so sign up now!

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