Actually, it was the lack of acting she hated. "I remember when I was dying in Silver Surfer...The director was like, 'It looks too real. It looks too painful. Can you be prettier when you cry? Cry pretty, Jessica.' He was like 'Don't do that thin with your face. Just make it flat. We can CGI the tears in.'" And I'm like, But there's no connection to a human being. And then it all got me thinking: Am I not good enough? Are my instincts and my emotions not good enough? Do people hate them so much that they don't want me to be a person? Am I not allowed to be a person in my work?
So, I found this little nugget buried in my feeds, linked from Comic Alliance, through Moviefone, to Jessicaalba.net and I can't help but notice not one of these websites commented on the importance of this quote. Moviefone acknowledged that it was a valid complaint, but was too busy making jokes at her expense.
And you know what, sure, Jessica Alba has never displayed a lot of acting talent. She's easy to take potshots at. But she is telling us exactly where that Fantastic Four sequel went wrong, and where Catwoman and Elektra and other incredibly shitty takes on superheroines went wrong. This is where supporting characters like Lois Lane in Superman Returns went wrong too. From the start, from the very point where they decide "Let's cast that girl based on her appearance--then make sure to change her hair and eye color", and the writing when they don't give them worthwhile parts, and the directing where they say "We need your pain to be attractive so just be flat because that's prettier" -- They don't treat female characters like people. The makers of these films aren't considering those the parts of people. Even when they DO hire an oscar winner, they don't write for her or direct her like they're writing for or directing a person. They're writing for and directing pinups. They think all they need someone who looks hot on the poster and a computer can do the rest. Then when it doesn't work, they say women don't work. After they made it not work.
When you figure all the lead woman in your film can be is window dressing, and you don't pick the best actress (and instead chose the sexpot who's natural looks you're going to cover with appearance and alter with CGI anyway), and you don't write a strong part for her (because you didn't pick a good actress who can carry it, or you'd rather write the men, or you don't feel comfortable with a heroic woman), and you don't encourage the actress to give her best in the role (because strong emotions aren't pretty, because you didn't pick a good actress to begin with so why bother), and you go as far to as to cut down on the humanity of a moment in order to make it more sexually palatable, then your movie sucks. This is why your movies suck, Hollywood. Not because your lead is female, not because your actress sucks (that's actually your fault because you morons hired the sucky actress and are actively trying to make her suck more), but because you've decided your lead isn't a human being. It's not female action heroes who suck, Hollywood, it's you.
(And by the way, if you comment anything to the effect of "Jessica Alba is just a bad actress trying to excuse her bad acting" that makes you an idiot who missed what I'm mad about. And an asshole too.)