Adele Haenel has been widely cited as one of the most talented actors of her generation, known for her mesmerising work in unforgettable films such as Portrait of a Lady on Fire. Although she is just 33, Haenel has decided to step away from acting because her political convictions aren’t reflected by the realities of the industry.
In a new interview, Haenel said: “I don’t make films anymore because of political reasons. Because the film industry is absolutely reactionary, racist, and patriarchal. We are mistaken if we say that the powerful are of goodwill, that the world is indeed moving in the right direction under their good and sometimes unskillful management.”
Although Haenel was supposed to star in Bruno Dumont’s The Empire, she left the project because the script tried to indulge in misogynist jokes about sexual assault. Haenel claimed that even though she tried to change the landscape through some projects, it was time for her to move to a field that would facilitate real change.
Talking about the problems with the industry, Haenel added: “For example, the perspective of women in the films. I tried to change something from within. When it comes to the MeToo movement, women’s issues or racism, the film industry is extremely problematic. I don’t want to be part of that anymore.”
In 2020, Haenel was in the headlines because she walked out of the César Film Awards where Roman Polanski was celebrated. Since then, Haenel has grown increasingly disillusioned because powerful men who have been accused of sexual assault and violence against women continue to occupy powerful positions. “I don’t want to be part of a feminist washing machine,” the actress declared. “It’s bullshit.”