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Léa Seydoux: ‘Being a Woman Onscreen Is Easier in Europe’ Than ‘Harsh’ Hollywood

Léa Seydoux prefers working on her original side of the pond than her adopted one — in Europe, she says, they know how to treat a lady (onscreen).

The French “Dune: Part Two” star revealed during a Harper’s Bazaar UK cover story that she finds being a working actress in Europe to be “easier” than in “harsh” Hollywood.

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“The industry in America, I find it harsh on women,” Seydoux, 38, said. “It’s hard for women to age. I don’t want to be afraid not to be desirable or to lose my contract. In America it’s economic, and when it becomes a matter of making money, you lose your freedom. I don’t feel comfortable with the fact that you have to tick all the boxes. Being a woman on screen is easier in Europe.”

Seydoux, who also stars in upcoming romance drama “The Beast,” is hardly the first actress to cite Hollywood as ageist and sexist — or even just plain unimaginative — when it comes to women. Phoebe Dynevor, 28, recently said there are too few roles for women her age as well.

“I have more freedom because I’m a European actress, which suits me,” Seydoux said. “I’m not trying to be popular, I’m just trying to enjoy myself. In America you have to conform. I don’t want to adapt myself to the system, I want the system to adapt to me!”

Still, the “system” has worked fine for her to this point, she says, even if Seydoux is yet to establish herself as a bonafide leading lady in Hollywood.

“I take what I get!” the “Blue Is the Warmest Color” alum said. “It’s tough for someone who’s not totally American to lead a Hollywood film.”

And yet it is precisely Hollywood that holds the best scripts, Seydoux previously told IndieWire.

“I feel that in America people have more imagination,” Seydoux said in 2022. “I have been offered films very very far from what I’ve done and I’m like, ‘Oh. Interesting.’ I love to feel that I can adapt myself. For me, that’s very exotic. I make the films that I would want to watch. It’s the only way I choose.”

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