Middle-aged actresses are told they are “lucky” to be working, Amanda Redman has said, as she revealed that magazines no longer want her to take part in photoshoots.
The 64-year-old, star of The Good Karma Hospital on ITV, voiced her frustration at the double standards in the television industry.
Earlier in her career, Ms Redman appeared in the hit series New Tricks and At Home With The Braithwaites. Her films include Sexy Beast.
Asked on the Acting Your Age podcast if she had experienced ageism, Ms Redman said: “Yes, I have. Absolutely."
Speaking about her younger years, she said: “Every time I launched anything there would be lots of requests for magazine cover shoots, and they've virtually died out now. So I'll still be doing an interview but they don't want any photographs. I think that's very interesting.
“And the offers that I get have dwindled massively.
“And I do resent being told: 'Well, you're very lucky to be playing a lead in a top show.' I think: 'Well, am I 'lucky'? Why should I be 'lucky'? I've earned it.
“That sounds very arrogant, I don't mean to be. And my argument is that they wouldn't say that to me if I was a man.”
The podcast is hosted by Nicky Clark, who founded the Acting Your Age campaign to draw attention to the fact that women in the acting profession face discrimination once they reach middle age.
She said: “As I began to look closely at the industry… I found that middle-aged women are decidedly absent and that’s interesting, because middle-aged men still have at least 20, if not 30, years of their career ahead of them in the industry.
“The middle-aged men in many of the shows that I’ve seen have much younger on-screen wives, and yet in my own friendship group this isn’t the case.
“Still, on TV and in film, male actors are paired romantically with women decades younger than they are.”
The campaign is backed by other actresses including Juliet Stevenson, who said: “Male actors may start their careers in their early 20s and they will continue those working lives right through to their 80s or 90s and never experience that plateau that happens [to women] in your late 30s or early 40s.
“There is no hiatus in the trajectory of their working lives or, if there is and they hit a period of unemployment, it won’t be to do with their age.”