Hollywood actress Jennifer Lawrence faced intense backlash after claiming she was the first female action hero in cinema when she starred in “The Hunger Games.”
Speaking with Variety, Lawrence said that prior to her role as Katniss Everdeen, “nobody” had put a woman as the leading role in an action movie, adding that people attempted to keep women out of roles by cultivating a lie about how audiences identify with characters.
“I remember when I was doing ‘Hunger Games,’ nobody had ever put a woman in the lead of an action movie because it wouldn’t work — because we were told girls and boys can both identify with a male lead, but boys cannot identify with a female lead,” she said.
“And it just makes me so happy every single time I see a movie come out that just blows through every one of those beliefs, and proves that it is just a lie to keep certain people out of the movies. To keep certain people in the same positions that they’ve always been in,” Lawrence added.
Prominent Twitter users quickly rushed to correct the actress, offering examples of high-budget action films starring female leads long before Lawrence entered the spotlight.
“Sigourney Weaver (Aliens), Linda Hamilton (Terminator), Uma Thurman (Kill Bill), any of the Charlie’s Angels, etc. might beg to differ…” Axios business editor Dan Primack tweeted.
Daily Mail columnist and former “The View” co-host Meghan McCain also mentioned Ripley from 1979’s “Alien” and Sarah Conner from 1984’s “The Terminator,” admitting that she was “obsessed” with the two characters when she was young.
“I’m sorry, what???” Game Informer associate editor John Carson replied, including a gif of Uma Thurman from Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Bill” franchise.
Bloody Disgusting horror movie columnist Paul Lê simply urged Lawrence to watch more action movies.
Boston Magazine contributor and author Dart Adams tweeted a long list of female-led action movies that Lawrence overlooked.
CBS sports editor Nick Stellini poked fun at recent controversial comments made by Hollywood talent, tweeting, “The Office wouldn’t get made today. Women had never kicked a– in movies before the Hunger Games. Marvel movies have to be taken seriously. Dental plan. Lisa needs braces. Dental plan. Lisa needs braces.”
Numerous other Twitter users, from both sides of the political spectrum, also took the rare moment to unite and slam Lawrence for her claim.
In the same Variety feature, Lawrence was asked how she feels about doing bigger tentpole moves like “X-Men.” In response, the actress said that while she thought it was an “awesome responsibility” to be in movies like “The Hunger Games,” she brought up concerns about children dressing up as her characters and feeling like they are not the proper weight.
“I remember the biggest conversation was “How much weight are you going to lose?” Along with me being young and growing and not able to be on a diet, I don’t know if I want all of the girls who are going to dress up as Katniss to feel like they can’t because they’re not a certain weight. And I can’t let that seep into my brain, either,” Lawrence said.