Nicole Holofcener, Shari Springer Berman & Lisa Cholodenko
Nicole Holofcener ("Walking and Talking," "Friends With Money," and most recently "Please Give") and Shari Springer Berman ("American Splendor," "The Nanny Diaries," "The Extra Man") might make very different kinds of films, but they have at least one thing in common -- they both hate being in front of the camera. "If I wanted to be in front of the camera ..." Springer Berman started as Holofcener finished her thought for her, "you'd be Lena Dunham." "I didn't even want to take photos at my wedding," Springer Berman confessed. "I hate being photographed."

"I'm happy to take a million ugly pictures with my family and doing silly poses, but I'm never happy with staged, posed photographs, which feel fake," Holofcener. "Although my toes were in 'Please Give.' You don't even have to look hard to find them -- it's a close-up."

Please Give

Sitting down with The Playlist before a panel about the glass ceiling at the Columbia University Film Festival, the directors, along with fellow Columbia alum Lisa Cholodenko ("Cavedweller," "The Kids Are All Right"), chatted about what they're plotting next, and the difficulties they face in filmmaking because of their gender.

"Why is it a glass ceiling?" Holofcener said. "Glass is a symbol that doesn't always work, because it makes it sound easy to break. Or maybe it's because you get hurt if you try to make it -- and then you're bleeding?"

"And if you're discriminated against, how do you really know?" Cholodenko asked. "You're not there in the room when they're not picking you for the job."

Since Springer Berman co-directs with her husband/partner Robert Pulcini, she actually is in the room for some of those meetings, and has witnessed firsthand how producers and crew members sometimes automatically defer to her male partner when it comes to decision-making.