There’s a sadly routine, but still important article, in Variety today about the lack of women-directed films this award season.
In response to the paltry showing of women directors among studio and indie films overall, New York Times film critic Manohla Dargis has been one to remind us about the lack of women’s opportunities in the business. She’s said it before — read this piece she wrote in 2009 Women in the Seats But Not Behind the Camera — (especially if you think things have changed) and I have no doubt she will say it again. She uses her power as a lead critic at the NY Times to be honest in a way many in the industry cannot do for fear of repercussions.
The movie industry is failing women. And until the industry starts making serious changes, nothing is going to change.
She gave a perfect example of Hollywood double standards, noting, “The great irony is that women are accused of making romantic comedies, as if it’s a bad thing, but [(500) Days of Summer] Marc Webb makes a romantic comedy and he gets Spider-Man [as his next project]. Are you kidding me? You cannot win.”
As women continue to prove themselves as audiences and as films about women protagonists become more successful and normalized, hopefully we can turn our much needed attention to how we get more women behind the camera in a variety of creative and technical roles, especially directing.
Read the piece for a good reality check.