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Hey Nina Jacobson - How About Picking a Woman for Catching Fire!

by Melissa Silverstein
April 19, 2012 11:00 AM
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According to reports in EW, the Playlist and the Hollywood Reporter, the search for a director for Catching Fire is down to two dudes -- Bennett Miller and Francis Lawrence.  Now I think that Miller is a great director.  I loved Moneyball and Capote.  But to pick him to direct Catching Fire when he has NO experience with something of this magnitude is ridiculous.  And Lawrence who has experience with CGI and action films is a name not on the tip of anyone's tongue and also doesn't seem right having directed I am Legend and Like Water for Elephants

The reports say that Miller is about to get started on a long term passion project Foxcatcher for this fall so that means he can't do it because Catching Fire has to start in the fall too.  Lawrence is well, available, so if is down to those two, he's probably the one who is going to get it.

I find this pathetic.  How come not one single woman's name has surfaced in any of the trade reports?  That usually means that none are being conidered seriously.  It's been bloggers who have put forward the female candidates and there are plenty- namely Patty Jenkins who won the job directing Thor but them bowed out.   Scott Mendelson puts forward 9 women who can direct Catching Fire: Kathryn Bigelow, Niki Caro, Catherine Hardwicke, Mary Harron, Patty Jenkins, Mimi Leder, Lynne Ramsay, Jennifer Yuh and Kasi Lemmons.

I know that everyone in Hollywood says that they always look for the best director -- male of female -- to do the job.  Well the fact is that women can't get on the list unless they get the call to direct something of magnitude.  And quite frankly giving this job to Francis Lawrence just because you have run out of time seems to be the most ridiculous thing I have heard in a long time.

So here's a plea to Nina Jacobson - FIND A WOMAN!  This is your chance to make history.  Give a woman who you trust and can work with with the chance to make this movie.  This movie will sell itself.  It's not like the choices of the male options are of the magnitude where you can rightfully say that the guy was picked because he was the best for the job. 

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  • KaKennedy | April 25, 2012 9:55 PMReply

    Do you really think they're going to put this film in the hands of a person, man or woman, who has one film under his/her belt - most of which are indie or big-screen flops? That's half of the women on your list. I'll admit that I would have liked to have seen Kathryn Bigelow's take, but you never know what happens behind the scenes or what they're looking for in terms of visuals (or even her availability, which I believe ruled a number of directors out).

    Although I have to say, as a woman, I find it somewhat disturbing that you think these people should get the job simply because of their gender. In my mind, Bigelow would have worked well because she has a great eye for action and emotional intensity - not because she has a vagina. It's more important that these films are done *right* than done to appease some feminist agenda.

    Let's not even get into the fact that Catherine Hardwicke, a woman on your list, is responsible for two of the most egregiously horrible female heroines in the past five years. Just because she's a woman doesn't mean she's going to create great female characters.

  • Bes | April 20, 2012 10:46 AMReply

    And keep in mind the schlockizing male writers and directors have a long history of doing to female characters. Usually it doesn't matter because the female characters don't do anything but provide a sexual outlet to the male characters but Hunger Games is a female centric story. Why give the job to a man when it is clear that as a group they have treated women characters as half drawn caricatures. And if the next HG movie is a POS I won't go to it.

  • Craig Ranapia | April 20, 2012 2:24 AMReply

    "I know that everyone in Hollywood says that they always look for the best director -- male of female -- to do the job. Well the fact is that women can't get on the list unless they get the call to direct something of magnitude."

    But, oddly enough, Garry Ross' lack of "magnitude" wasn't a problem. For the record, I liked Pleasantville but it wasn't exactly Gone with the Wind, folks. Nor do I think it's being catty to point out that Ross' second turn in the director's chair, Seabiscuit may have been critically well-received but it was a pretty saccharine horse soaper that barely recouped it's $90 million budget.

  • Ineed | April 19, 2012 3:49 PMReply

    Yes!! Why is it so damn hard for women to get directing gigs in this town! I have a funny feeling the producer who starts hiring women directors is going to be very glad they did...hopefully I will be one such person once my company is launched...more to come but I concur 100%. Bring on the woman director!

  • LeonRaymond | April 21, 2012 8:06 PM

    Well , I hope to be able to submit to your company, I do 97% women centric screenplays and set to direct one that I wrote with the help of the Producers of Musical Chairs the movie, why as male do I write in that mode, simple it's much more exciting, I already know what I would do as a male but what a woman might do is 10 times more fun and women are far more unpredictable as characters I could name 10 supremely awesome films directed by a woman and 1 such was my entry into the business after I saw it, and that was Daughters of The Dust. They are just not trying to hear hiring a woman to do HG 2 I could hear them shooting down the idea in the meeting room at once.

  • ska-triumph | April 19, 2012 2:58 PMReply

    Here here! Get on the Twitterverse if you haven't already Lady M!

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