We’re totally with her.
No, not with Hillary Clinton. (Although, yes, we’re with Hillary Clinton, too.)
But we’re with Mila Kunis at the moment, following that star having written a powerful essay on feminism as it relates to a terrible experience she had back in the day in Hollywood.
In the piece, which she posted on husband Ashton Kutcher’s aplus.com website, Kunis brings up the time she refused to pose semi-nude for a men’s magazine shoot.
In response, she was told she’d “never work in this town again” by a producer, according to Kunis.
“I was livid, I felt objectified, and for the first time in my career I said ‘no.’ And guess what? The world didn’t end,” Kunis wrote.
“The film made a lot of money and I did work in the town again, and again, and again.
“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.”
Kunis, the rare female star who seems beloved by both genders, went on to explain how lots of women are under pressure to be meek or soft-spoken in the workplace.
Just ask Clinton about this, right?
Consider the negative reaction she gets from critics when she dares to act bold or ambitious.
“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,” Kunis wrote, adding:
“So we compromise our integrity for the sake of maintaining the status quo and hope that change is coming.”
In a proactive step against this issue, Kunis started a production company with three other women “to develop quality television shows with unique voices and perspectives.”
However, the company ran into a obstacle when it was attempting to pitch a show to a major network… and an “influential male producer” chimed in on an email chain with a problematic quip.”
“And Mila is a mega star,” the anonymous producer wrote, Kunis says. “One of biggest actors in Hollywood and soon to be Ashton’s wife and baby momma!!!”
The production company pulled out of a potential deal with this network due to the way this producer belittled Kunis, reducing her to baby momma status.
“Yes, it is only one small comment,” she wrote. “But it’s these very comments that women deal with day in and day out in offices, on calls, and in emails – micro aggressions that devalue the contributions and worth of hard-working women.”
Here is how Kunis concluded her essay:
I’m done compromising; even more so, I’m done with being compromised.
So from this point forward, when I am confronted with one of these comments, subtle or overt, I will address them head on; I will stop in the moment and do my best to educate. I cannot guarantee that my objections will be taken to heart, but at least now I am part of creating an environment where there is an opportunity for growth.
And if my comments fall on deaf ears, I will choose to walk away.
Thank you, Mila.
And thank you, Mindy, for summarizing how Kunis should be feeling after penning such an awesome essay.