A US actress who sued the owners of the IMDb film industry online database for revealing her real age vowed Friday to appeal, after her lawsuit was rejected.
Huong Hoang, who goes by the professional name Junie Hoang, said it was “hurtful” to have her age revealed to every prospective employer in Hollywood, where she said ageism was widespread.
The 41-year-old, who was initially referred to only as “Jane Doe” in the legal action, launched the suit for damages and interests in 2011 against online retail giant Amazon, which owns the Internet Movie Database (IMDb)
The Vietnam-born actress alleged fraud, breach of contract and violation of her private life, as well as her consumer rights.
But on Thursday the court in Seattle ruled against the actress, whose IMDB profile shows her in regular work since the late 1990s with credits including “Ungirlfriendable” and “Gingerdeadman 3: Saturday Night Cleaver.”
Speaking to AFP Friday, she said IMDb profiles’ inclusion of dates of birth “causes a lot of problems, not just for actors, but for writers, producers, directors, anybody that works for the entertainment business.
“Everybody uses it in the entertainment business and it’s like having your age in every job resume. You’re not really allowed to ask someone’s age in a job interview but the way IMDb works is you have a profile where you have a resume and your pictures and all the work you have done.
“And having your age there is basically exposing how old you are anytime you apply for a job. It’s very hurtful. There’s a lot of age bias in Hollywood,” she added.
“We are looking to a chance to appeal it and the unions have been very supportive with the lawsuit.”
According to the original lawsuit, the actress changed her name to make it more American and has never wanted to reveal her age in order to maximize her chances of obtaining film roles.
When she first listed her name on IMDb she gave a false birth year of 1978, instead of 1971. But Amazon found out her real age and changed her details, despite her objections, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
The actress, who lives in Texas, believes details of her age were uncovered by doing record searches using her credit card information, and has asked the site to remove her age from her profile, but it has refused.
Watch ABC News’ report on Hoang’s website against IMDB, aired Friday, below.
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