How Reese Witherspoon is Changing the Game for Women

Is it just me, or have you noticed how much of a gift Reese Witherspoon is to all of us recently? Not only is she killing the game in acting and producing, but she’s also become a prominent role model while on a mission to empower women everywhere to fulfill their potential and fight for equality. I’ve compiled some Reese moments/endeavors that I think have added up to my current state of appreciation for this women and what she’s doing in the industry.

Legally Blonde

OBVIOUSLY. I feel like this is a vital part of Reese that no one will ever forget. I think it was my first memory of her as well (I also just realized I was FOUR years old when it came out). She got her law degree, despite the harsh opinions of her ex and her family, giving us a role model right out of the gate; I don’t know if it’s just me, but I wanted to be a lawyer for a while after seeing her do it. The role made us see the “Type A” Reese that Hollywood seemed to typecast her as for a while. While we did have a great era of Type A Reese, she’s definitely broken that mold through hard work and dedication. 

Pacific Standard/Hello Sunshine

Speaking of Type A, Reese founded a film production company called Type A Films because she wanted to produce more quality films for women. In 2012, the company became Pacific Standard when Type A Films merged with Bruna Papandrea’s "Make Movies.” Pacific Standard gave us the empowering stories of Gone Girl, Wild and Big Little Lies—all UNREAL in my opinion. In late 2016, the company became Hello Sunshine, and can you think of a better name for a Reese company? Hello Sunshine also has a Reese-approved Book Club. There’s a ton of buzz about the company’s future projects, and I can’t wait to see them. 

Little Fires Everywhere 

Little Fires Everywhere is one of the projects we can expect from Hello Sunshine in the near future. Hulu landed the limited series which is based on the Celeste Ng bestseller and will feature Reese and Kerry Washington; both will be producers as well. Reese tweeted, "Y’all! I’m so excited to tell you that @kerrywashington and I will be bringing #LittleFiresEverywhere to the screen together ! I love this beautiful book about motherhood and I can’t wait to finally collaborate with one of my favorite actresses.” Hulu might be my new favorite streaming service after this one.

Big Little Lies

Big Little Lies is another Pacific Standard/Hello Sunshine project that made me become a Reese fanatic. I’m sure you know all about it if you’ve watched any of the award shows this season, but if you haven’t, let me just say it won eight Emmys, four Golden Globes and was renewed for a second season, even though it was supposed to be a mini-series based off a novel of the same name. It also was filled with empowering female leads, and the love in that crew is so cute. I can’t wait to binge watch season two all in one day like I did with season one.

#TimesUp

Reese is thought of as a leader in the Time’s Up movement in Hollywood. She’s been vocal about her own experiences with sexual assault and harassment, and she’s dedicated to raising awareness for the issues that have been kept quiet in Hollywood. She’s responsible for the pin that many stars have been wearing on the Red Carpet, specifically at the Golden Globes where everyone wore black in protest of the misconduct in Hollywood; The Hollywood Reporter says she created the movement’s logo and pin design in just two weeks. She continues to be an advocate for the movement, and she encourages women in every industry to stand up. So… Reese for president?

“March On”

Reese gained another title recently to add to her ever-growing list: Elizabeth Arden’s Storyteller-In-Chief. According to the makeup company’s website, Arden walked down Fifth Avenue in 1912 and handed out red lipstick to the suffragettes as a symbol of solidarity in fighting for equality. The “March On” campaign aims to encourage the empowerment of women with the limited edition Reese lipstick. All of the proceeds of the product go to UN Women—an organization dedicated to gender equality. We hope this new Storyteller role means even more women hear about orgs like this!

A Wrinkle In Time

I never knew I needed this movie until I saw trailers and interviews with this bunch. Oprah, Reese, Mindy Khaling and Storm Reid posed at Disney for a surprise appearance at a preview of the buzzed-about movie. The film is based on the 1962 novel of the same name. The movie follows Reid’s character as she searches for her father on a new planet, with the help of the three “astral travelers.” The film has been highly respected for its message and its thoughtful casting. Director Ava DuVernay said, "With these women, I wondered, could we make them women of different ages, body types, races? Could we bring in culture, bring in history in their costumes? And in the women themselves, could we just reflect a fuller breadth of femininity?” Reese had the innocence but power DuVernay wanted for her character, and that’s how she got this memorable role. 

This Walk of Fame Moment

“I’m running a bit late for work today, but it’s really important. I heard my friend is really close by, so I want to go meet her really quick and I want you guys to meet her too.” Reese led the camera on her Instagram story to her Hollywood Walk of Fame star, quickly brought out a tissue and started buffing her star. “Oh, now you’re looking good, girl. And don’t let people walk all over you!” This is totally an Elle Woods move. Also… how is it that this feels like women empowerment to me even though she’s just cleaning the ground?