Menopause Has Been a Punchline for Too Long — Now, Film & TV Storylines Are Entering 'The Change'

Thanks to women behind the scenes, there are finally more nuanced takes on menopause onscreen.

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But programs have also highlighted what’s to gain with the pain. In the Netflix comedy Grace & Frankie, the titular leads played by Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin sell sex toys geared toward seniors; and cover star Naomi Watts says indeed post-meno has been the sexiest time of her life. In the Sarah Lancashire-starring HBO Max program Julia about Julia Child, we see the chef and cookbook author’s career soar in her later years, too.

At an event for Through Her Lens this fall, the Tribeca and Chanel partnership to foster female filmmaking, Tribeca Film Festival co-founder (and prolific producer) Jane Rosenthal told InStyle there’s one way to be sure we continue to turn this tide: “By having more amazing stories about women of a certain age.” 


She adds, “If women don’t support women, no one else is going to do it. If we don’t support people with other points of view and all walks of life, no one else is going to do it.” And she sees this need as urgent, well beyond our desire for more relatable entertainment. “We look at what’s going on in this country: There is a war against women and minorities. And the only way I know how to do it, the only way Tribeca knows how to do it, the only way [co-founder Robert] De Niro knows how to do it is with our voices, with our art and our passions.

With additional reporting by Tess Petak

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