In Suffragette, Carey Mulligan stars as an early 20th-century housewife fighting for the right to vote in Great Britain, and although the film is set about a century ago, it raises questions about women’s rights that are still applicable today. Mulligan sat down with Deadline to talk about the film and how Hollywood discussions of feminism — like Jennifer Lawrence’s wage gap essay — can have real-world significance.
“I think it’s a good thing for someone like Jennifer to speak out; it means an awful lot to women,” Mulligan told Deadline. “Sure, there’s been some cynicism toward her speaking out and the fact that she makes a lot of money, but she is completely and selflessly rising above that. [The discrepancy] is inherently unfair and she has an enormous platform to speak out against it. Men in Hollywood look up to her because she is powerful. She’s using that platform to correct something that isn’t right. It’s a long overdue conversation and it’s admirable what she has done. This is an age-old issue that’s in every part of society.”
Mulligan also touched on the importance of strong female role models in film, citing Lawrence’s role as Katniss in The Hunger Games as an excellent example. But Mulligan herself said that although she’s had a chance to star in big franchise films, she’s turned them down.
“Those films have come my way in the past,” Mulligan said. “The style doesn’t appeal to me. The Marvel films — while I enjoy watching these movies — the material doesn’t speak to me. With these types of franchise films there’s always the conversation of starring in more than one film and I’m not interested in playing the same character in more than one film. What’s appealing to me is playing different characters.”
Read Mulligan’s full interview at Deadline.