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To The Academy: Consider the Women

Women and Hollywood By Melissa Silverstein | Women and Hollywood February 23, 2012 at 10:54AM

It's that time of year, The Academy Awards, the "Super Bowl for Women." It's the night where we all get catty about whose dress doesn't work, who's got a new boyfriend or girlfriend, and who looks like they haven't eaten all month.
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It's that time of year, The Academy Awards, the "Super Bowl for Women."  It's the night where we all get catty about whose dress doesn't work, who's got a new boyfriend or girlfriend, and who looks like they haven't eaten all month.

Because the world is paying attention to Hollywood in a bigger way this week there is an opportunity to raise awareness about gross inequities in the business.  So we here at Women and Hollywood are taking this opportunity to say that THERE NEED TO BE MORE WOMEN CONSIDERED FOR BEST DIRECTOR. 

So we put together this video (it's only a little over a minute) highlighting some of the women directed films from this past year that were passed over.  We're not trying to say that all of them should have been nominated (though we think a couple of them should have), what we are trying to say is that we have to find a way to get women directors into these conversations. 

We are so tired of watching parade after parade of men being praised for their work.  Last year at least we got to see Kathryn Bigelow up on the stage giving out the best director award, this year, the lack of women will be glaring.   Not only are there no women directors nominated, no films directed by women are nominated for best picture.
 

Here are the stats again:

  • In 2011, only 5% of the top grossing films in Hollywood were directed by Women.  The number has decreased since 1998.
  • In 84 years only 4 women -- Lina Wertmuller, Jane Campion, Sofia Coppola and Kathryn Bigelow -- have been nominated for best director.  One 1 has won.

We want to acknowledge the women directed films nominated:

  • Best Animated Feature: Jennifer Yuh Nelson for Kung Fu Panda 2;
  • Documentary (Short Subject): The Barber of Birmingham: Foot Soldier of the Civil Rights Movement - Robin Fryday and Gail Dolgin; God Is the Bigger Elvis - Rebecca Cammisa and Julie Anderson; Saving Face - Daniel Junge and Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy; The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom - Lucy Walker and Kira Carstensen
  • Foreign Language Film: Agnieszka Holland for In Darkness
  • Short Film Animated: Wild Life - Amanda Forbis and Wendy Tilby; A Morning Stroll- Grant Orchard and Sue Goffe
  • Short Film Live Action: The Shore - Terry George and Oorlagh George; Time Freak - Andrew Bowler and Gigi Causey

Please feel free to send this video out far and wide, and on Sunday, remember that women directors voices and visions are missing from this very large cultural conversation.   Telling people this is a cultural problem and not just a gender equity problem is a first step.
 

Video link: http://youtu.be/qMB5mEPI_Zc

To go mobile use this link: http://vimeo.com/37290311

The Oscar Noms: It Sucks to Be a Female Filmmaker Part 2 (Women and Hollywood)

This article is related to: Lina Wertmuller, Sofia Coppola, Jane Campion, Kathryn Bigelow, Statistics, Women Directors, Academy Awards, Angelina Jolie, Larysa Kondracki, Miranda July, Ava DuVernay, Maryam Keshavarz, Dee Rees, Kelly Reichardt, Vera Farmiga