Dustin Hoffman Breaks Down As He Realizes What Life Is Like For Women (Video)

Owen Poindexter
Dustin Hoffman remembers the moment that he realized how much easier life is for men, in this short, must-see video.

Dustin Hoffman remembers the moment that he realized how much easier life is for men. In this moving interview with the American Film Institute, Hoffman breaks down remembering a moment from thirty years ago when he realized how many women he had never gotten to know, because they weren't attractive enough. It started when he had makeup artists make him into a convincing woman as preparation for his role in Tootsie, about an actor who disguises himself as a woman to help his career.

The makeup artists succeeded, but Hoffman wasn't satisfied.
"When we got to that point and looked at it on the screen, I was shocked that I wasn't more attractive. And I said, 'now you have me looking like a woman, now make me a beautiful woman.'"
The makeup artists told him that they already had him looking as beautiful as Dustin Hoffman the woman could get.
"It was at that moment that I had an epiphany and I went home and started crying. Talking to my wife, I said, 'I have to make this picture.' And she said, 'why?' And I said, 'because I think I'm an interesting woman, when I look at myself on screen, and I know if I met myself at a party, I would never talk to her.'"
That's a brave thing to tell your wife, but presumably she was interesting and attractive to Dustin Hoffman. She wanted more of an explanation:
"There are too many interesting women that I have not had the experience to know in this life, because I have been brainwashed."

It's really easy--I'm catching myself doing it already--to say, "yes, good point Dustin Hoffman, but of course I figured that out years ago." We've all been brainwashed, and it probably takes more than one moment of realization to get our heads around that. Women's rights and the feminist movement have made incredible progress over the last hundred years, and especially the last fifty. There's more to do, though, and confessions like Hoffman's push that movement a little further along.