Lena Dunham admits her privilege helped her find success with Girls at age 23 

Lena Dunham responded to and agreed with critics on social media who said her young success in Hollywood was due to privilege. 

In a series of tweets on Monday, the 34-year-old said she ‘didn’t know what privilege was’ early on in her career. 

Actors and filmmakers of color began commenting on her privilege by retweeting and commenting on a tweet from The Hollywood Reporter that said ‘[email protected] was 23 when she sold #Girls to HBO with a page-and-a-half-long pitch, without a character nor a plot.’

I agree: Lena Dunham responded to and agreed with critics on social media who said her young success in Hollywood was due to privilege, in a series of tweets on Monday (pictured in 2017)

She started her message with a joke writing ‘Whenever I find out I’m trending, I have to immediately check if I’m alive.’  

‘Then, I try and see if there’s a constructive dialogue to have on Twitter,’ Lena continued. ‘Often there isn’t, but today there really WAS.’

She found the conversation critics were having about her career was useful, and not much of a discussion but rather an agreement.  

‘It actually wasn’t a dialogue,’ she wrote. ‘It was just me agreeing that the Hollywood system is rigged in favor of white people and that my career took off at a young age with relative ease.’

In agreement: 'It actually wasn’t a dialogue,' she wrote. 'It was just me agreeing that the Hollywood system is rigged in favor of white people and that my career took off at a young age with relative ease'

In agreement: ‘It actually wasn’t a dialogue,’ she wrote. ‘It was just me agreeing that the Hollywood system is rigged in favor of white people and that my career took off at a young age with relative ease’ 

Claim to fame: Lena created and starred in Girls on HBO from 2012 until 2017, while also serving as writer, director and executive producer

Claim to fame: Lena created and starred in Girls on HBO from 2012 until 2017, while also serving as writer, director and executive producer 

The conversation: Actors and filmmakers of color began commenting on her privilege by retweeting and commenting on a tweet from The Hollywood Reporter that said '.@LenaDunham was 23 when she sold #Girls to HBO with a page-and-a-half-long pitch, without a character nor a plot'

The conversation: Actors and filmmakers of color began commenting on her privilege by retweeting and commenting on a tweet from The Hollywood Reporter that said ‘[email protected] was 23 when she sold #Girls to HBO with a page-and-a-half-long pitch, without a character nor a plot’ 

Much of the earlier discussion on Dunham centered on a comment she made to THR three years ago, regarding her lack of preparation and development when she signed the deal for Girls. Many also pointed to her family’s wealth.

‘Lena Dunham’s parents were highly influential art curators that lived in SOHO,’ one user wrote. ‘And also both inherited wealth themselves can we stop f*****g glorifying trust fund babies in entertainment plz they truly offer nothing.’  

Black creators in the entertainment industry described the amount of work they put into pitches which did not result in the same level of success.   

Film professor Ahmed Best wrote ‘I have a masters degree in film and teach film at a top tier university, An over twenty five year professional career and I walk into pitches with a fully realized bible pilot and seven season arc, and often times told it’s not enough. But Lena Dunham, cool.’ 

Backlash: Much of the earlier discussion on Dunham centered on a comment she made to THR three years ago, regarding her lack of preparation and development when she signed the deal for Girls, many also pointed to her family's wealth

Backlash: Much of the earlier discussion on Dunham centered on a comment she made to THR three years ago, regarding her lack of preparation and development when she signed the deal for Girls, many also pointed to her family’s wealth

The reason: MSNBC Contributor Jason Johnson echoed the statements and pointed to privilege being the same reason other networks and outlets were also being called out

The reason: MSNBC Contributor Jason Johnson echoed the statements and pointed to privilege being the same reason other networks and outlets were also being called out 

Didn't understand privilege: Lena said that when her career took off with an HBO deal for her show Girls, at 23, she didn't understand why and didn't second guess it

Didn’t understand privilege: Lena said that when her career took off with an HBO deal for her show Girls, at 23, she didn’t understand why and didn’t second guess it 

MSNBC Contributor Jason Johnson echoed the statements and pointed to privilege being the same reason other networks and outlets were also being called out. 

‘Remember Issa Rae produced TWO viral seasons of Awkward Black Girl on Youtube then made a pit stop at an online outlet before she got a deal for #InsecureHBO,’ Johnson wrote. ‘Lena Dunham showed up with scribbles on a napkin and got a pilot.’

He added: ‘And you wonder why black folks are calling out ABC, Bon Apetit, NYT and MORE media outlets to come about systematic racism and it’s play cousin nepotism.’ 

Lena said that when her career took off with an HBO deal for her show Girls, at 23, she didn’t understand why and didn’t second guess it. 

Comparison: Film professor Ahmed Best wrote 'I have a masters degree in film and teach film at a top tier university, An over twenty five year professional career and I walk into pitches with a fully realized bible pilot and seven season arc, and often times told it’s not enough. But Lena Dunham, cool'

Comparison: Film professor Ahmed Best wrote ‘I have a masters degree in film and teach film at a top tier university, An over twenty five year professional career and I walk into pitches with a fully realized bible pilot and seven season arc, and often times told it’s not enough. But Lena Dunham, cool’ 

A show of privilege: Though Lena wasn't the only source of privilege on Girls that users took aim at, writing that multiple main actors on the show came from powerful families

A show of privilege: Though Lena wasn’t the only source of privilege on Girls that users took aim at, writing that multiple main actors on the show came from powerful families

‘I wasn’t able to recognize because I also didn’t know what privilege was,’ she wrote. 

Though Lena wasn’t the only source of privilege on Girls that users took aim at, writing that multiple main actors on the show came from powerful families. 

‘Ah yes. Lena Dunham w/ the well connected NY society parents. Allison Williams, daughter of MSNBC (then NBC anchor Brian Williams),’ another user wrote. ‘Zosia Mamet, daughter of Pulitzer Prize winning, Tony nominated playwright, David Mamet. Really overcame the odds.’ 

Adding that in the last decade she has learned more about her privilege and ho to move forward. 

Not just her: 'Ah yes. Lena Dunham w/ the well connected NY society parents. Allison Williams, daughter of MSNBC (then NBC anchor Brian Williams),' another user wrote. 'Zosia Mamet, daughter of Pulitzer Prize winning, Tony nominated playwright, David Mamet. Really overcame the odds'

Not just her: ‘Ah yes. Lena Dunham w/ the well connected NY society parents. Allison Williams, daughter of MSNBC (then NBC anchor Brian Williams),’ another user wrote. ‘Zosia Mamet, daughter of Pulitzer Prize winning, Tony nominated playwright, David Mamet. Really overcame the odds’ 

New lessons: 'The past ten years have been a series of lessons,' she continued. 'The lesson now? Sit down. Shut up, unless it’s to advocate for change for Black people. Listen'

New lessons: ‘The past ten years have been a series of lessons,’ she continued. ‘The lesson now? Sit down. Shut up, unless it’s to advocate for change for Black people. Listen’

Lena created and starred in Girls on HBO from 2012 until 2017, while also serving as writer, director and executive producer.   

‘The past ten years have been a series of lessons,’ she continued. ‘The lesson now? Sit down. Shut up, unless it’s to advocate for change for Black people. Listen.’

She also encouraged white creators to create in private to make way for creators of color. 

Adding: ‘Make art in private for awhile- no one needs your book right now lady. Give reparations widely. Defund the police. Rinse & repeat.’ 

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