Elizabeth Banks apologises after 'messing up' over Spielberg female roles claim

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Hollywood actress Elizabeth Banks has apologised to Steven Spielberg after incorrectly and publicly accusing the director of never having made a movie with a female lead.

Acclaimed film-maker Spielberg cast Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey in the star roles in The Colour Purple, his Oscar-nominated movie adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Alice Walker novel.

The Pitch Perfect actress, 43, made the gaffe when she took to the podium at an awards ceremony in the US honouring women in film.

She told the audience: "I went to Indiana Jones and Jaws and every movie Steven Spielberg ever made and, by the way, he's never made a movie with a female lead. Sorry, Steven. I don't mean to call your ass out, but it's true."

Banks, who appeared in Spielberg's 2002 film Catch Me If You Can, tweeted her apology after her error caused a backlash.

"I messed up," she wrote on Twitter.

"When referring to Steven Spielberg at the Women In Film awards, I framed my comments about his films inaccurately.

"I want to be clear from the start that I take full responsibility for what I said and I'm sorry," she said.

"When I made the comments, I was thinking of recent films Steven directed, it was not my intention to dismiss the import of the iconic The Colour Purple."

Banks, who directed Pitch Perfect 2, apologised for not listening to those who attempted to correct her during her speech.

"I made things worse by giving the impression that I was dismissing (actress) Shari Belafonte when she attempted to correct me," Banks said.

"I spoke with Shari backstage and she was kind enough to forgive me."

The star concluded: "Those who have the privilege and honour of directing and producing films should be held to account for our mistakes, whether it's about diversity or inaccurate statements. I'm very sorry."