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Panel explores role of women in Hollywood

Weaver, Saldana, Mitchell, Dushku participate

Sigourney Weaver, Zoe Saldana, Elizabeth Mitchell and Eliza Dushku were the “Wonder Women: Female Power Icons in Pop Culture,” a Thursday Comic-Con panel hosted by Entertainment Weekly. Questions focused largely on the ever-changing role of women in Hollywood and the ways in which sci-fi films helped break down stereotypes.

Weaver was heralded for her performance in the “Alien” films and praised throughout the event for her breakthrough action role. She credited “Aliens” writer/director James Cameron for his ability to “create characters not necessarily designed for women.”

Though Weaver received the lion’s share of attention, it was “Star Trek” starlet Zoe Saldana who most captured the audience’s imagination with her heartfelt – if rambling — asides and pithy critiques of the Hollywood system. When asked why the “Wonder Woman” franchise sought a younger face, Saldana elicited much applause with her reply: “Sixty-five-year-old men want to see young women running around… and unfortunately, [the men] are the ones cutting most of the checks.”

Both Weaver and Saldana appeared at Comic-Con to promote James Cameron’s “Avatar,” but the actresses revealed no film details during the panel.

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