While we often hear vague stories of rampant sexism ruling Hollywood, it's harder to pin down specific cases.
It's not easy for actresses to speak out about these things, mostly because 50 percent of the time their careers get ruined when they do.
Look at Katherine Heigl — she called "Knocked Up" sexist one time, and basically never worked on a big project again because of it.
So this open letter about gender bias from Mila Kunis should not be taken lightly. The 33-year-old actress is taking a risk, undoubtedly, but for a more than worthy cause.
In an essay titled "You'll Never Work In This Town Again…" published on A Plus, Mila shared two stories of sexism she experienced in Hollywood.
Mila described a time when she refused to "pose semi-naked on the cover of a men's magazine" for a movie promotion, and a producer responded with a threat to end her career by saying to her,
You'll never work in this town again.
This phrase, besides being rude AF, struck a nerve with Mila.
What this producer may never realize is that he spoke aloud the exact fear every woman feels when confronted with gender bias in the workplace. It's what we are conditioned to believe — that if we speak up, our livelihoods will be threatened; that standing our ground will lead to our demise. We don't want to be kicked out of the sandbox for being a 'bitch.' So we compromise our integrity for the sake of maintaining the status quo and hope that change is coming.
But as far as Mila can see, change does not seem to be coming any time soon.
The second instance of sexism Mila shared came from another producer, this time while she was working on a new project with three female friends, and one male producer.
In the process of pitching this show to a major network, the typical follow-up emails were sent to executives at this network. In this email chain, this producer chose to email the following: 'And Mila is a mega star. One of biggest actors in Hollywood and soon to be Ashton's wife and baby momma!!!' This is the entirety of his email. Factual inaccuracies aside, he reduced my value to nothing more than my relationship to a successful man and my ability to bear children. It ignored my (and my team's) significant creative and logistical contributions.
In light of this most recent incident, Mila decided she is "done with compromising," and "done with being compromised."
Mila vowed to call out the sexist comments she hears in the industry from now on.
I will address them head on; I will stop in the moment and do my best to educate.
Finally, she said,
I will work in this town again, but I will not work with you.
Hell yeah, Mila! You tell those bigots where you can and can't work.