As we start the new year, I thought it would be interesting to look at the narratives that dominated the conversation over the past year. Would love to hear if you have any thoughts on other topics that dominated the conversations.
Here is what I came up with:
The success of Bridesmaids and the realization that women can be funny. (duh)
Winter's Bone and The Kids are All Right get best picture nominations for 2011.
Women directors not being in the conversation for the 2012 Oscar.
The breakout success of Jessica Chastain
Women make up only 33% of speaking parts in films and less than 10% of writers and directors.
Jennifer Yuh Nelson becomes the highest grossing women director with King Fu Panda 2.
Women and Hollywood: One of the narratives of the film is that you created an unlikeable female character. We see unlikeable men all the time. Why is such a big deal that we have a female lead who is unlikeable?
Diablo Cody: The conventional knowledge in Hollywood is that an unsympathetic female character can tank a movie. I’m hoping that’s not true. I’m knocking on wood really emphatically right now but honestly I have a lot of theories sometimes I wonder if it comes down to mommy issues. The idea of a cold, unlikeable woman or a woman who is not in control of herself is genuinely frightening to people because it threatens civilization itself or threatens the American family.
But I don’t know why people are always willing to accept and even like flawed male characters. We’ve seen so many loveable anti-heroes who are curmudgeons or addicts or bad fathers and a lot of those characters have become beloved icons and I don’t see women allowed to play the same parts. So it was really important to me to try and turn that around.
If you think you knew what Young Adult was about, this will throw a wrench in those thoughts. Just please don't play this around the kids - it's good and dirty.
Film opens in NY and LA Dec 9 and then rolls out across the country.
The fact that we are going into year two is news in itself. In this difficult economic times raising money and support for a film festival about women's leadership is challenging. I am so proud to be working with a great community of people at Barnard College -- especially my co-founder Kitty Kolbert and the college's President Debora Spar -- who believe in this effort.