Not that this needed proving, but Moss’s firsthand experience confirms the industry has a long way to go, despite any progress it boasts publicly. In a conversation hosted by New York’s 92nd Street Y, per The Hollywood Reporter, Moss opened up to author-filmmaker Justine Bateman about being sent a grandma role one day after turning 40.
“Literally the day after my 40th birthday, I was reading a script that had come to me, and I was talking to my manager about it,” Moss, who’s now 53, said. “She was like, ‘Oh, no, no, no, it’s not that role [you’re reading for]; it’s the grandmother.’ I may be exaggerating a bit, but it happened overnight. I went from being a girl to the mother to beyond the mother.”
Moss continued, “You don’t feel like you’ve aged much and suddenly you’re seeing yourself onscreen,” later adding, “I would look at these French and European actresses and they just had something about them that felt so confident in their own skin. I couldn’t wait to be that. I strive for that. It’s not easy being in this business. There’s a lot of external pressure.”
Of course, this pressure is hardly ever felt by male actors, who don’t endure the same ageism in Hollywood and continue to play the “sexy” lead well into their 50s and 60s. “I had heard that at 40 everything changed,” Moss said in the conversation. “I didn’t believe in that [at first] because I don’t believe in just jumping on a thought system that I don’t really align with.”
Carrie-Anne Moss will reprise her role as Trinity in The Matrix 4, which is slated for a December 2021 release. She’ll be rejoined by Keanu Reeves, Jada Pinkett Smith, Lambert Wilson, and Daniel Bernhardt.