Emma Thompson wants more authoritative female roles in films

Emma Thompson wants more authoritative female roles in films

Emma Thompson doesn't think there are many good roles for "older" actresses.

The 59-year-old star will next be seen playing a female judge in the movie 'The Children Act' and she has admitted she jumped at the chance to nab the part because she was surprised by that the authoritative figure was a woman.

Speaking to Reuters, she said: "I'd never seen a story about a female judge, and I think in our patriarchal world, when you hear the word judge, you automatically think, 'Oh, it's a man.' Men don't have any problem with that.

"It's something that hasn't yet properly changed. We are seeing some really good and interesting new roles, so one's got to be hopeful."

The film tells the story of a High Court Judge called Fiona Maye (Thompson), who has to decide whether a 17-year-old boy called Adam with leukaemia should be forced to have potentially life-saving blood transfusions despite the procedure going against his religious beliefs as a Jehovah's Witness.

While preparing for the movie, Emma spent time at the Old Bailey and has admitted she was in awe of the judges and how they come to their decisions.

She explained to the Guardian newspaper: "The family court is considered the poor cousin of the criminal court, but it's where the real drama and the real pain happens. Spending time at the high court was one of the greatest privileges. Backstage at the [Old] Bailey and in those places, only judges and their clerks are allowed to walk on the red carpet. It's extraordinary. The arcane hierarchies within that system are amazing. Then you suddenly realise that they [judges] are these godlike creatures in their robes walking around with this extraordinary power, and hardly any women have that kind of power in the world, ever, so you're playing something very unusual."

The film's producer, Duncan Kenworthy, added: "Movies have become Marvel extravaganzas. To make a film with serious intentions about real things is quite hard these days."

'The Children Act' will hit UK cinemas on August 24.

Discussion