A recent report from CIMA, the Spanish Association for Women Filmmakers and Audiovisual Media Professionals, found that women directors of narrative features were outnumbered by male directors five-to-one in 2015.
The report surveyed the films shortlisted for 2015 Goya nominations. The Goya Awards are Spain’s most prominent national film awards. Of 143 films, 65 narrative features were directed by men, while 12 were directed by women. Of the films nominated for documentary categories, there were 50 male directed films and 17 women directed films.
The report also found that women make up only 26% of key production roles in the Spanish film industry. This percentage includes directors, writers, production heads, executive producers as well as cinematographers, art directors, editors, those working in sound, music and hair, makeup and costume.
Juana Macias, president of CIMA, expressed dismay at the findings: “We have the same number of men and women studying in film schools so something obviously isn’t quite right.” She added, “The lack of diversity means that some points of view, those of women, are lost.”
The news about Spanish filmmaking’s gender disparity comes at the heels of a pan-European study conducted by the European Women’s Audiovisual Network (EWA) released last month at the 2016 Berlinale. The report, which conducted research in seven European countries, found similarly dismal statistics across the UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Italy, Austria and Croatia.
Much like in Spain, the film school to film industry pipeline is leaving women behind. Though women are 44% of film school graduates, the total women working in the film industry is 24%. Overall, only one in five films in the seven European countries are directed by women.
At the Berlinale, the EWA provided several policy recommendations and best practice guidelines, including a call for further research on gender parity in film industries and at film schools, as well as more targeted support for first-time female directors.