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2011 Hollywood Writers Report – Women Make Up 24% of All Writers

2011 Hollywood Writers Report - Women Make Up 24% of All Writers


The 2011 Hollywood Writers Report published by the Writers Guild of America, West was released yesterday, and the report, entitled Recession and Regression shows little progress for female writers.

Here’s the overview from the report

The present report underscores just how precarious gains on the diversity front have been in the Hollywood industry. As the nation grappled with the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, the few hopeful signs for women and minority writers discussed in the previous report either disappeared or seemed considerably less encouraging by 2009. For women writers, this meant a decline in overall employment share – which left women underrepresented by factors of nearly 2 to 1 in film and 3 to 1 in television — and a widening of the gender earnings gap in the television sector.

The statistics are for the years 2008 and 2009. Here’s the deal:

• Overall, female writers make up 24%.
• In TV, female writers make up 28%
• In film, female writers make up 17% of film writers.
•  The overall earning gender gap increased. Women earned $98,600 compared to $108,000 for white males.

Digging a little deeper:

The gender earnings gap in film decreased mainly because guys made much less money since fewer films went into production during the period of the report. Women’s earnings went from $57,428 to $62,500, and for men it was $76,517 down from $97,719 from the previous report.

As for race, TV is very white. Only 10% of the writing jobs go to people of color. It has been in that ballpark for the last 6 years. And it is even worse on films where only 5% of the films are written by people of color. In film, writers aged 71-80 made the most money; and in TV writers aged between 41 and 50 earned the most.

There is so much work to be done on this issue. Remember this is all writers in the guild — writers who work on indie films and studio films. These statistics show how few women’s voices are making it into our lives.

Full report here.

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