Reese Witherspoon thinks female-led movies are good business -- and she's out to prove it

Reese Witherspoon Larry Busacca GettyLarry Busacca/GettyReese Witherspoon.

While giving her speech at Glamour’s Women of the Year Awards on Monday, actress/producer Reese Witherspoon put a spotlight on female-driven movies.

“Female-driven films work,” she said at the event, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “Films with women at the center are not a public service project, they are a big-time, bottom line-enhancing, money-making commodity. “

She has first-hand exerience that it’s true.

Since founding her production company, Pacific Standard, with a focus on featuring female authors and lead characters for women, Witherspoon has helped drive very successful female-centered projects, including “Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde” (she was an executive producer), “Wild,” and “Gone Girl” (the latter two adapted from books by female authors). Her company also has dozens of films and TV shows in development.

The actress has taken it upon herself in recent years to put the focus of women at the fore in the entertainment industry. Her #AskHerMore initiative has urged reporters to ask women on the red carpet deeper questions than what designer dresses they’re wearing. And since starting to produce back in the early 2000s, Witherspoon has dedicated herself to finding projects that give women the main focus of the stories.

“Why do people have prejudiced opinions against women who want to accomplish things?” she asked. “Why is that perceived as a negative? … Like Elle Woods [in “Legally Blonde”], I did not like to be underestimated.”

And she has box-office numbers to back it up.

As she pointed out, the cumulative grosses of “Gone Girl” and “Wild,” which she also starred in and for which she received an Oscar nomination, total over $US420 million.

Read Witherspoon’s complete speech here.

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