From fighting for reproductive freedom, transgender people’s rights and marijuana legalization on the campaign trail with presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, to hiking Colombian mountains with her son, Susan Sarandon is always up for new adventures.
Even after a nasty tumble on a recent hike put the Oscar-winning actress in a medical boot, she didn’t contemplate stopping. It was just another growing experience.
“For about an hour and a half, I was very careful … But as soon as I got to the bottom, where it started getting easy, I stopped paying attention. The next thing I knew, I was on my knees and had fractured my ankle. It just goes to show you how out of your body you can be, that you don’t pay enough attention,” says Sarandon, recently in town to promote her new movie “The Meddler.” Co-starring Rose Byrne and J.K. Simmons, the film opens Friday.
Known for playing fiercely independent women in “The Hunger,” “Thelma and Louise” and “Dead Man Walking,” the 69-year-old actress manages the leg brace in a manner unlike that of Marnie Minervini, her character in “The Meddler,” a widow and mother who finds herself forced to rethink her life’s purpose.
’The film is about how as we get older, we start to have challenges to our identity. This woman has been very good at loving and supporting her husband, but now has to find a completely different raison d’être. Unfortunately, for women that begin to own themselves and know their voice, it’s often hard to find playmates. That’s why I spend a lot of time with younger people, because they are questioning, searching and up for the adventure,” says the actress and activist, a prominent Sanders supporter who also made news in 2015 when she led a procession and burned Timothy Leary’s ashes in a temple at Burning Man.
Doing everything she can to defy the reality that “women are not seen at a certain point,” Sarandon admits, “I’m a little jealous when I see a 27-year-old girl, because I think, ‘You’re going to have so many more adventures.’ But then I think, ‘I’ve had a really great life, and her anxiety about the size of her thighs is so misplaced.’ I know so much more than I did, thankfully. I’ve learned that failure is good, because you can come back from it. Then the next time you fall, you think, ‘This is really bad, but I’ll be OK.’”
IF YOU GO
Starring: Susan Sarandon, Rose Byrne, J.K. Simmons
Written and directed by: Lorene Scafaria
Running time: 1 hour, 40 minutes