Too much personal information, about an actor, can ruin the believability of the character the actor is playing.
Intentionally, I used the gender-defining ‘ACTRESS’ term in this article’s title. Usually, I try to use ‘ACTOR’ for both male and female professionals in acting. As much as I can, that is.
Professional acting is a harder business for women. It just is, even though I wish it weren’t, and I assume you do too. (It’s also complicated problem, that won’t be easy to solve. I do write about it here, and feel it’s best to be open about it.)
Actors create other people, than themselves. It’s a delicate artistry that turns an actor into a different person than they are. It’s a kind of illusion that requires a unspoken agreement from the audience to do their part, which is to ‘make pretend’. For both genders, while acting, character believability is better served with personal mystery. Information about an actor’s personal self, can interfere with character believability. Simply, real facts and definition conflict with the believability of the character being played. The true facts about the person playing the character, can destroy ‘the pretend’ about the character the actor is playing.
Especially, in the professional field. Conflicting information that define the actor as an individual, can be powerfully damaging to acting opportunities when seeking acting work, and auditioning.
Professional acting careers are tougher to create, and to maintain a longevity in; for women.
If a woman is in the Industry, still, by the time she’s in her 30′s, she’s lucky. If she is still making a living into her 40′s, she’s an actress who is a professional acting rarity, a very slim statistic.
The actress who is suing (she’s suing Amazon, actually, because they now own the Internet Movie Database) claims that after she intentionally did not type any birthdate information into her profile there; IMDb published her actual birthdate on her profile anyway. How did IMDb obtain this information? Allegedly, via her credit card company.
A US actress has lodged a $1 million lawsuit against Amazon accusing the Internet giant of revealing her age on the film industry website IMDB by using personal details from her credit card.
The actress, who asked for her identity to be masked and is referred to only as “Jane Doe,” has launched the suit for damages and interests with the Western District Court of Washington state, in northwestern Seattle.
She is alleging fraud, breach of contract and violation of her private life, as well as her consumer rights.
According to the suit, the actress… never wanted to reveal her age in order to maximize her chances of obtaining film roles.
Since 2003 her profile has been available on the Internet Movie Database (IMDB), which is owned by Amazon, when she joined the site as an unknown actress.
In 2008 to increase her exposure, she subscribed to IMDbPro which offers “insider information” to paying clients. To join the service, the actress had to hand over her credit card details.
“Shortly after subscribing to IMDbPro, plaintiff noticed that her legal date of birth had been added to her public acting profile in the Internet Movie Database, revealing to the public that plaintiff is many years older than she looks,” the lawsuit states.
“In the entertainment industry, youth is king. If one is perceived to be ‘over-the-hill,’ i.e., approaching 40, it is nearly impossible for an up-and-coming actress, such as the plaintiff, to get work,” it added.
The actress, who lives in Texas, believes details of her age were uncovered by doing record searches using her credit card information, and has asked the site to remove her age from her profile, but it has refused.
It’s obvious that an actress may not want her age published, isn’t it? I wonder why IMDb decided to include that, altogether, when creating a site about actors? It seems odd, and obviously inappropriate to me.
SAG and AFTRA made a public statement to IMDb, admonishing them for their practice of publishing actors’ ages. I posted it in Actor Unions. Here’s a link: Hollywood Actor Prep’s Union News.
Inform actors and others: share please.
(…Someone ‘liked’ this before I even finished a proofread. Whoever you are, I love you…)