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Jennifer Yuh Nelson Becomes The Top Grossing Female Director

Jennifer Yuh Nelson Becomes The Top Grossing Female Director

Jennifer Yuh Nelson, the director of Kung Fu Panda 2 has become the highest grossing female director. These are worldwide numbers and they are big. The tally now is at $645 million. She wins the crown from Phyllida Lloyd who held it since Mamma Mia grossed $609 million.

Here’s a quote from the director from a press release:

I am humbled and happy that audiences around the world continue to respond to the story and characters in Kung Fu Panda 2. No animated movie gets made without a huge team of people so I want to offer my sincere thanks and shared congratulations to all of the talented and inspiring artists who worked with me on the movie.

The number is significant because it is breakthrough in the world of animation which is not a world full of women. Yuh Nelson holds another distinction in the world of animation — she is the first woman to direct an animated film solo. The animation world regularly goes through directors and it was big news a year or so ago when Brenda Chapman got fired from Brave.

Here’s to hoping Yuh Nelson will get more opportunities to direct now that she hit this one out of the park.

Kung Fu Panda 2′ becomes highest-grossing film directed by a woman (EW)

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Time for an update… Kung Fu Panda 2 is nominated for an Oscar and a few Annie's. Jennifer Yuh Nelson is only the second female animation feature director and top grossing female director ever. She is setting records and they are being ignored…dare I say it…because we are talking about animation.
Please recognize this incredible achievement and bring women to the forefront!

Thank you.


The above information is incorrect. Although Yuh Nelson is the first solo female director for a major animation studio there are several female directors who came before her, most notably Lotte Reiniger who directed one of the first full length animated films in 1926 – a whole eleven years before Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

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