Video of Helen Mirren Responding to Sexist Comments in 1975 Interview Resurfaces

Video of Helen Mirren Responding to Sexist Comments in 1975 Interview Resurfaces

The video of Helen Mirren being interviewed by Michael Parkinson on his talk show “Parkinson” resurfaced on Babe, a website dedicated to young women’s issues, who posted it to Facebook on Friday.

A recently unearthed interview proves Helen Mirren has been shutting down sexist BS for decades.

In a video clip from 1975 which was recently posted to Facebook, a 30-year-old Mirren takes on British talk show host Michael Parkinson. The interview began on an awkward note when Parkinson introduced Mirren as a “sex queen,” and it only got worse as 41-year-old Parkinson repeatedly asked her a slew of sexist questions.

 “You are in quotes a serious actress,” Parkinson said, to which Mirren flatly responded: “In quotes? What do you mean in quotes? How dare you.”

At the time of the interview, Mirren was acting with the Royal Shakespeare Company and appeared on “Parkinson” to discuss her newest role as Lady Macbeth. The full interview ― which has become somewhat notorious for its overt sexism ― was posted to YouTube in 2008 and has received almost 3 million views.

 Parkinson unfortunately didn’t stop there, asking Mirren if she thought her “equipment” ― i.e. her body and breasts ― hinder her from becoming a successful and serious actress.
Because serious actresses can’t have big bosoms, is that what you mean?” Mirren asked. “Well, I think that they might sort of detract from the performance,” Parkinson responded with a chuckle. 

Swati Sharma

Swati Sharma is an editor at “On Breaking”. She is a very enthusiastic journalist and has worked for many Esteemed Online Magazines and Celebrity Interview, thus gaining a huge experience before joining the team at On Breaking. You can mail on gmail teenbabe1@gmail.com

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  • John Mortimer

    Sharma clearly has no journalistic integrity. Look at how she flagrantly misrepresents and skews the dialogue to fit her agenda. Mirren didn’t “flatly” say “How dare you,” as if she were genuinely indignant. She was clearly being playful, as evidenced by her lighthearted manner and jests, such as “You mean my fingers?” For that matter, define “overt sexism.” At any rate, you’re an idiot if you think Parkinson is sexist for asking that question. At the time, Mirren was a sex symbol, known for her numerous nude scenes. So, in context, it was a valid question. It’s just reality. Like it or not, people have certain perceptions based on how you look. Is that fair in itself? Of course not. But that isn’t the issue.

    The unfortunate fact is that such perceptions exist, and as such, Parkinson’s question was legitimate. And even Mirren didn’t take herself seriously, judging by how coyly she acted before she finally got around to answering the question. Was Mirren indeed merely being playful? Sure. But that’s the essence of what the question speaks to, which makes her either hypocritical or obtuse. In any case, the question itself wasn’t sexist. You can’t label anything that displeases you as sexist, ladies. That’s not what the word means. And lacking Y chromosomes doesn’t give you the right to dictate the bounds of propriety.