I was reading Entertainment Weekly last week and there was a feature in there about Angelina Jolie's new movie Salt. Originally, the action film was set to star Tom Cruise as a CIA agent who gets accused of being a Russian sleeper spy. When Cruise dropped out, the role was rewritten as a woman to accommodate the casting of Angelina Jolie.
There's an interesting part of the article where they discuss how this caused a domino effect in how the rest of the script was rewritten. Director Philip Noyce says, "In the original script, there was a huge sequence where Edwin Salt saves his wife, who's in danger. And what we found was when Evelyn Salt saved her husband in the new script, it seemed to castrate his character a little, so we had to change the nature of that relationship."
Interesting that it wasn't considered degrading for a woman to be rescued as a damsel in distress, but the instant a man was put in that part the whole attitude changed. I know I have a fair number of female readers, so I put it to you - is that sexist of the creators? If it was okay to have a less than heroic wife as the victim, why did the husband need to be rewritten as more assertive?
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