The actor has rejected offers by the people behind the scenes in the TV series Mare of Easttown to adjust how she is seen in order to make her look more conventionally attractive.
Kate Winslet has said she refused a director’s offer to edit a sex scene in which she showed a “bulgy bit of belly” for her latest television series.
The actor claimed Craig Zobel, the director of her new HBO series Mare of Easttown, had offered to show her body in a more flattering light.
Winslet, who plays detective and a grandmother Mare Sheehan in a Pennsylvania town in the programme, the finale of which was broadcast in the UK on Monday, said she had refused and told Zobel: “Don’t you dare.”
She also said she twice sent back the promotional poster for the drama because she felt it had been altered too much.
“I’m like: ‘Guys, I know how many lines I have by the side of my eye, please put them all back,’” Winslet, 45, told the New York Times.
“I said to my husband [Edward Abel Smith]: ‘Am I OK with that? Is it all right that I’m playing a middle-aged woman who is a grandmother who does really make a habit of having one-night stands?’ He’s like: ‘Kate, it’s great.’”
The actor added: “Listen, I hope that in playing Mare as a middle-aged woman – I will be 46 in October – I guess that’s why people have connected with this character in the way that they have done because there are clearly no filters.
“She’s a fully functioning, flawed woman with a body and a face that moves in a way that is synonymous with her age and her life and where she comes from. I think we’re starved of that a bit.”
Winslet is not hiding her age or the way she really looks and I hope that it helps older women actors gain parity with men.
Female actors who in their younger days were romantic leads find, as they reach middle age and beyond, that it is much harder to get good roles, even as they age gracefully. Male actors can age into character actor leading roles but older women tend to get sidelined into minor parts. Meryl Streep, Helen Mirren, Diane Keaton, and Glenn Close are among the few exceptions.
One thing that will help is that older male actors could land major roles because older men occupied most of the positions in the workplace and in the public sphere. As it becomes more common for older women to occupy those niches, they will, hopefully, be able to land as many good roles.