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Real Women: Ready For Their Close-up

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Washington, DC

The news that the Obama family might be getting a Portuguese Water Dog was so exciting at my house, which is owned by a pair of Portuguese Water Dogs, that I nearly missed the big story of the weekend: It appears that a mature movie star has realized that playing opposite a teeny-tiny young actress might make him look stupid, fat and old.

Naturally the studio is denying that Russell Crowe's age, girth and weathered visage (Crowe's-feet!) were a factor in deciding to release Sienna Miller from "Nottingham," but I am thrilled to imagine that such a story might be true.

Are producers really "looking for an older, plumper actress to play the role so [Crowe] doesn't look like a paunchy grandpa. Someone in her late 30s or early 40s" as the story claims? What a wonderful day this must be for all the old girls in Hollywood. I can see them having extra carbs for lunch, canceling their spin classes and Botox treatments. Maybe they're calling the Enquirer to come and capture their cottage-cheese thighs on the beach in Malibu!

Does this mean that we'll see more pairings of box-office beefcake with age-appropriate actresses? Perhaps the economy has gotten so bad that the marketing machine has figured out that women (of all ages, who buy lots of movie tickets) really do think it is pretty gross to watch an old guy romancing an actress who looks like a teenage girl. Maybe the young actresses who are trying so hard to preserve their pre-pubescent looks will finally feel empowered to grow up, and out.

First, a black man is about to become our president and now middle-aged actresses are considered legitimate Hollywood love interests - 2009 is already shaping up to be a fantastic year. I could go on and on, but Onda and Lilly are demanding to be fluffed up and taken for a nice, long walk, downtown, near the Hay-Adams Hotel, just in case Sasha and Malia look out the window and see how adorable they are and decide that they really, really want a Portuguese Water Dog and then Porties will rule over all the dogs in the whole world. Take that, Labradoodles.