Tina and Amy

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Meryl Streep’s inspiring solution to Hollywood’s ageism problem might actually work 

American comedian Amy Schumer blew up social media this week with a parody sketch brilliantly skewering ageism in Hollywood. The skit,“Last F**kable Day,” features Schumer stumbling upon a trio of actresses, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Tina Fey, and Patricia Arquette, enjoying a beautiful celebratory picnic. The occasion? Louis-Dreyfus’ last f**kable day—according to the media—after which she will only be considered for roles as mothers, grandmothers and other characters generally deemed “undesirable.” As Louis-Dreyfus explains it, you know your career has officially peaked in the eyes of men (and some women) when “you go to wardrobe and the only thing they have for you to wear are long sweaters that cover you up head to toe.”

The skit is so bitingly funny in part because female viewers understand a much uglier truth is lurking just beneath its surface: sexism in Hollywood is still rampant, and the women involved are totally over it.

Now, increasingly, they’re also doing something about it.

One of the big ways women and minorities can ensure more accurate, equitable representation is by diversifying the people who devise the plots. Women’s involvement in Hollywood hovers around 30% industry-wide; when it comes to screenwriting that number drops significantly to about 15%. This eye-popping disparity  may be why a new writer’s lab for female screenwriters over 40 has already received so much attention.

Funded largely by Hollywood superstar Meryl Streep, The Writer’s Lab is a partnership between New York Women In Film and Television (NYWIFT) and IRIS (a collective of female filmmakers) that will select eight female screenwriters for a three-day workshop of intensive script development and screenplay polishing. Each participant will be paired with already-successful female, writers and producers; the hope being to give a leg up to a demographic too often overlooked.

As NYWIFT director Terry Lawler noted in a statement: “After decades of ageism and sexism in our culture and in our films, the complex voices of mature women are in danger of being lost entirely. Women must address this inequality by taking ownership of that narrative.”

I guess there’s a  sizzle reel  for the “Sisters” Movie!

I can’t find it but here’s the description [Im so excited]:

It was only a few months ago that Universal Pictures unleashed our first look at the new Tina Fey-Amy Poehler comedy Sisters, but that was merely a 20 second sneak peek. Tonight at CinemaCon the studio delivered a full blown sizzle reel for the Jason Moore-directed feature, and the movie honestly looks absolutely hilarious.

The footage wasted absolutely no time at all demonstrating the sisterly chemistry shared between Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, kicking things off with the two driving around in a suburban area when they spot a guy (Ike Barenholtz) gardening in his front yard. Attracted, they pull over to the side of the road and actually start cat-calling him, making suggestions about him doing “some work on [their] bushes.” While it’s Fey’s character that really gets this started, it’s clearly Poehler’s character who is a bit more attracted to him, and after the guy responds, “I don’t have to be the butt of your jokes,” it doesn’t take long before she makes it super awkward, suggesting that she is going to laugh in his butt – which she acknowledges as getting way too dirty way too fast.

From there, we start to get to know the two characters a bit. Poehler’s character has been divorced for two years, has very little social life to speak of, and works as a nurse (a gig that unfortunately requires her to apply lotion to old men’s scrotal areas). Fey’s character, meanwhile, is the more outgoing sister, and she seems to have a bit of an irresponsibility streak and no job (we see her going in for an interview, but when it doesn’t go so well she offers to text the potential employer a picture of her boobs, which she describes as “high and happy”).

It’s when the two women go to visit their parents (James Brolin, Dianne Wiest), that the plot starts to reveal itself. Their mom tells them that a decision has been made to sell their house, and the siblings need to clear all of the stuff out of their shared childhood bedroom - which is a total mess. We then see a montage of Fey and Poehler going through all of their old stuff, wearing every hair clip they can find and reading passages from their diaries. They very clearly had very different experiences as kids, as Poehler’ talks about her rock tumbler, and Fey finds “very incorrect information about how to put an IUD in.” They then come to the conclusion that it’s unfair that Poehler never really had a fun party night in the house when they were growing up, so it’s decided that they will throw one big rager before they officially have to leave the property.

From there, the sizzle reel featured many really funny interactions between the two sisters and a number of funny supporting players. This includes John Cena as a tattoo-ridden drug dealer far too intense for the women’s needs (they’re merely looking for something you’d smoke before a Bangles concert); Maya Rudolph as an old classmate from high school (with whom the sisters have a funny, catty conversation); and Bobby Moynihan as a cop who appears during the film’s party scene to check on the ages of the partygoers (who are all obviously way older than 21). It’s Ike Barenholtz and Amy Poehler who got the best final moment in the footage, however, as they are shown getting together in her bedroom at the party when a lit candle falls on his crotch. This causes him to fall to the ground, and accidentally get a ballerina music box stuck up his ass - “past the tutu.”

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are without question two of the funniest comedic actresses working today, and it’s truly awesome that they are getting what looks to be a very raunchy, R-rated comedy to play in. And while Poehler stole many moments in the reel, it was especially great to see Fey play the ridiculous wild child.Sisters does have an uphill battle coming later this year, as it is set to hit theaters the same weekend as J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but it definitely looks funny enough to still find an audience.

Hey for all you Tina/Amy fans who are up Taylor Swift’s ass this past year because it’s cool to like her right now, (as opposed to the year before that because it was cool to hate her bc apparently some people can only like or dislike what tumblr tells them to) she’s still whining about that joke they made at the Globes two years ago.

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“Talk to me about your friendship with Tina Fey. I mean, it seems like this is a pretty good time to be a smart girl, you got two pretty compelling examples.”

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Tina: When the producers of this event first called us… last night. I said, ‘It’s three in the morning, who died?’ And they explained that everything was fine and it’s just that they were planning a comedy event and that no women had agreed to show up.  Amy: And so I said, 'What award is Jerry Lewis getting?“ And they said, 'No, no, no. It’s not Jerry Lewis. It’s Don Rickles.’ Tina and Amy honour Don Rickles