Why are there so few female film directors?

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its kinda weird

Wrinkles, I'll See You On the Other Side (Shakey Mo Collier), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:22 (ten years ago) link

There are some prominent ones, e.g.,Sofia Coppola.

Daniel, Esq., Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:23 (ten years ago) link

if women are socialized to be looked at, maybe it's unsurprising that they don't choose/aren't chosen to do the looking

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:26 (ten years ago) link

yeah that would explain the dearth of female artists, authors and photographers as well

rip dom passantino 3/5/09 never forget (max), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:29 (ten years ago) link

maybe it's rampant entrenched sexism in the film industry

just sayin

Swat Valley High (goole), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:29 (ten years ago) link

artists, authors and photographers are not managers

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:29 (ten years ago) link

I know there are a handful active in the Hollywood system (Taymor, Campion, etc.) but the percentages are ridiculously low, especially compared to other creative professions.

Wrinkles, I'll See You On the Other Side (Shakey Mo Collier), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:30 (ten years ago) link

do adult men and women predominate among the subject matter of female photographers the way they do in the movies?

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:31 (ten years ago) link

who is that in the photo, Allison Anders?

lolz who's gonna rep for Penny Marshall

Wrinkles, I'll See You On the Other Side (Shakey Mo Collier), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:31 (ten years ago) link

Sofia Coppola of course has family connections

many prominent female directors seem to come from other countries

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:32 (ten years ago) link

who is that in the photo, Allison Anders?

Mira Nair

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:32 (ten years ago) link

Kelly Reichardt

Mr. Que, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:33 (ten years ago) link

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:33 (ten years ago) link

Kathryn Bigelow!

Simon H., Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:34 (ten years ago) link

do adult men and women predominate among the subject matter of female photographers the way they do in the movies?

? cindy sherman, nan goldin, mary ellen mark, annie liebovitz, jodi cobb. . . .

Mr. Que, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:35 (ten years ago) link

I can think of a few reasons:

* Film directing is probably considered a more "technical" (and hence stereotypically more masculine) way of doing art than, for example, painting or dancing. Especially since a lot if not most movie directors start by doing all the technical stuff like editing and shooting themselves, before their career reaches a point where they can hire others to do it.

* Making a movie requires a lot more financial backing, know-how, networking, etc, than painting or writing poems, for example. You've got a better chance of getting all that if you're a member of the Boys' Club.

* A film director is kinda like a CEO, and people stereotypically trust male leaders better than female leaders.

Tuomas, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:36 (ten years ago) link

cindy sherman takes pictures of herself

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:36 (ten years ago) link

yah--she's an adult woman tho and that's what you were asking about

Mr. Que, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:36 (ten years ago) link

of Que's list, only Liebovitz would seem to act as a 'director' of straight men in her work, and she does, or originally did, so under the auspices of a male institution (often devoted to puffing up (sometimes gender-bending) men)

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:39 (ten years ago) link

all of them take pictures of adult men and women

Mr. Que, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:43 (ten years ago) link

I think you'll find many of the artistic positions that are more like "leader of a group" than "a solitary artist" to be male dominated: classical conductors, band leaders, theatre directors, etc. That's because in "solitary arts" a women can just say "Screw you!" to all the gender stereotypes and do whatever she wants, whereas with "group arts" you have to depend on financial and social backing from others, so the stereotypes are harder to ignore.

Tuomas, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:43 (ten years ago) link

Women don't belong behind a camera – they belong behind a hot plate.

Bud Huxtable (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:48 (ten years ago) link

I'd have to guess that Nancy Meyers (The Parent Trap, What Women Want, Something's Gotta Give, The Holiday) is one of the most successful woman directors these days, box-office-wise.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 15:50 (ten years ago) link

mimi leder
claire denis
catherine breillat

blair underwood: "man up" (omar little), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:15 (ten years ago) link

lol thread is all mangs posting

cant go with u too many alfbrees (Abbott), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:20 (ten years ago) link

Especially since a lot if not most movie directors start by doing all the technical stuff like editing

Editing seems to be a a pretty female friendly profession in the film industry

Dante ... Bruno . Vico .. Passantino (Tom D.), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:20 (ten years ago) link

Thelma Schoonmaker, yo.

Bud Huxtable (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:21 (ten years ago) link

Jill Sprecher
Susan Streitfeld

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:21 (ten years ago) link

Much more common than camera, errrrrrrr, persons for instance!

Dante ... Bruno . Vico .. Passantino (Tom D.), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:22 (ten years ago) link

Susan Seidelman
Sarah Polley

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:23 (ten years ago) link

Belladonna

cant go with u too many alfbrees (Abbott), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:24 (ten years ago) link

lols I am gross-o

cant go with u too many alfbrees (Abbott), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:25 (ten years ago) link

Not that bad a representation when compared to, say, being a music producer or conducting an orchestra

Dante ... Bruno . Vico .. Passantino (Tom D.), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:25 (ten years ago) link

Lisa Cholodenko

Bud Huxtable (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:25 (ten years ago) link

Julie Delpy
Robin Swicord
Kasi Lemmons
Nicole Holofcener
Nancy Meyers

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:28 (ten years ago) link

Good we have named a whole bunch of people found thru google searches that hardly anyone wld be familiar with; glass ceiling broken.

cant go with u too many alfbrees (Abbott), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:30 (ten years ago) link

Callie Khouri

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:31 (ten years ago) link

i like that this has turned into "name whatever female directors u can think of off the top of your head"

s1ocki, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:31 (ten years ago) link

amy heckerling

blair underwood: "man up" (omar little), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:31 (ten years ago) link

That was always going to happen (xp)

Dante ... Bruno . Vico .. Passantino (Tom D.), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:32 (ten years ago) link

xpost Yeah, are we just naming female directors now? Doesn't prove anything, but OK:

Agnes Varda
Mary Harron
Kimberly Peirce
Lynne Ramsay

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:32 (ten years ago) link

whole bunch of people found thru google searches that hardly anyone wld be familiar with

sorry, no

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:32 (ten years ago) link

it proves that there are not zero female film directors.

s1ocki, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:32 (ten years ago) link

wtf is naming female film directors proving, exactly?

Lamp, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:33 (ten years ago) link

it proves that there are not zero female film directors.

s1ocki, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:33 (ten years ago) link

asia argento

blair underwood: "man up" (omar little), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:33 (ten years ago) link

maybe we're not proving anything ;)

Reggiano Jackson (gabbneb), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:34 (ten years ago) link

ida lupino

blair underwood: "man up" (omar little), Tuesday, 26 May 2009 17:34 (ten years ago) link

Of course--there's always the intent, primary or secondary, explicit or implicit, that, "If you're interested in this, start here." Just responding to the surprise/derision above that people looking at such lists might then discuss what they see as omissions. And, as I posted, discussing them does not mean you view those omissions as a big deal; historical completeness was clearly not the goal here.

clemenza, Saturday, 11 July 2015 13:54 (four years ago) link

Curious omission
Posted by JonTheDad (not verified) on July 9, 2015 - 11:00am
I'm surprised Hurt Locker didn't make this list. Any reason why?

REPLY

1staethyr, Saturday, 11 July 2015 17:38 (four years ago) link

one month passes...

Saw Dorothy Arzner's Dance, Girl, Dance sometime in the '80s--first read about it in one of those Danny Peary cult books--and it always stayed in my mind. Looking at it tonight, the first half-hour's a little clunky, but it really picks up once Lucille Ball gets her Tiger Lily engagement. Maureen O'Hara's big speech is pretty great, as is the ending, and a throwaway name-joke that came back to me immediately.

clemenza, Friday, 28 August 2015 02:40 (four years ago) link

seven months pass...

http://moviemezzanine.com/women-directed-films-home-media/

, Thursday, 31 March 2016 22:33 (three years ago) link

one year passes...

The Lightbox has an Ida Lupino series this summer, including four of the films she directed.

http://www.tiff.net/#series=ida-lupino-independent-woman

clemenza, Thursday, 25 May 2017 01:49 (two years ago) link

one month passes...

A local video store (long-standing, and one of about three left in the city) evidently started a "films for free" series recently, and they've got a long list of female-directed films as a subset of that.

http://www.baystreetvideo.com/films_for_free_list.php

clemenza, Friday, 14 July 2017 15:07 (two years ago) link

six months pass...

Forgot to acknowledge the centenary of Ida Lupino, born 100 years ago last Sunday. I saw her film Outrage last week; despite the strictures of the Code ("rape" is not uttered, though that's what it's about), it's a solid, haunting psychological drama.

http://sensesofcinema.com/2009/great-directors/ida-lupino/

http://www.syfy.com/syfywire/why-ida-lupino-was-such-a-groundbreaker-for-women-in-sci-fi

ice cream social justice (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 6 February 2018 16:34 (one year ago) link

good articles

Nhex, Tuesday, 6 February 2018 17:04 (one year ago) link

five months pass...

btw someone on Letterboxd made a list of 3806 female-directed films. I've seen 204 of them.

the ignatius rock of ignorance (Dr Morbius), Friday, 20 July 2018 15:08 (one year ago) link

three weeks pass...

Barbara Loden’s son Marco Joachim shared this picture from the tour his mother did to screen her 1970 independent film WANDA. She is not only the star, but she also wrote and directed the film. Marco will share stories 8/10 at the WANDA show at Egyptian. Screens August 10-12. pic.twitter.com/QHA9guqvYr

— AmericanCinematheque (@SidGrauman) August 9, 2018

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 10 August 2018 15:11 (one year ago) link

I hear there's talk of a Criterion edition of Wanda coming some time soonish.

Ward Fowler, Friday, 10 August 2018 15:26 (one year ago) link

huh - never heard of this! sounds interesting

Οὖτις, Friday, 10 August 2018 15:30 (one year ago) link

you can bet on it, Ward, per the Janus Films copy re the NY revival.

http://metrograph.com/film/film/790/wanda

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 10 August 2018 15:35 (one year ago) link

Shakey, there's a serviceable print of Wanda on YouTube, last time I looked. It's not a film where visual pleasure is paramount, but it would still be good to have a dece physical copy out there.

Ward Fowler, Friday, 10 August 2018 15:49 (one year ago) link

I'll rent the criterion when it comes out

Οὖτις, Friday, 10 August 2018 15:56 (one year ago) link

The guy who put out a "Directed by Elaine May" T-shirt a couple of years ago has moved on to "Directed by Barbara Loden" T-shirts.

http://phildellio.tripod.com/loden.jpg

clemenza, Friday, 10 August 2018 16:01 (one year ago) link

been hearing a lot about Wanda in the last month, trailer looked good. "an American Jeanne Dielman" sounds great

flappy bird, Friday, 10 August 2018 16:53 (one year ago) link

it's a lot shorter...

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 10 August 2018 17:02 (one year ago) link

Watched Wanda around the time of the road movie poll, it's fucking great.

emil.y, Friday, 10 August 2018 17:33 (one year ago) link

Btw Morbs I can't remember which thread you posted it in, but that female cinematographers season looked really good.

emil.y, Friday, 10 August 2018 17:34 (one year ago) link

Also, Wanda can't stand the heat, so she gets out of the kitchen.

clemenza, Friday, 10 August 2018 17:34 (one year ago) link

it was NY film snobs! series just ended at Lincoln Center

xp

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 10 August 2018 17:36 (one year ago) link

three months pass...

Caught a screening of Wanda yesterday, preceded by two 1975 shorts which are apparently the only other films directed by Barbara Loden. The Frontier Experience was quite excellent (she also plays the lead in it).

But... The Boy Who Liked Deer, just 18 minutes long, is perhaps the saddest film I've ever seen. If this was actually shown to school kids, that's incredible.

Josefa, Monday, 26 November 2018 22:41 (nine months ago) link

would love to see that, has the recent Wanda restoration gotten a home video release? I saw it about a month ago, really great, a movie made by its final shot.

flappy bird, Tuesday, 27 November 2018 03:21 (nine months ago) link

The Boy Who Liked Deer is on youtube, I see

Josefa, Tuesday, 27 November 2018 05:04 (nine months ago) link

Wanda is under the Janus Films umbrella, that means a CC eventually

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 27 November 2018 05:21 (nine months ago) link

I watched The Boy Who Liked Deer tonight. It would make a good double bill with Cipher in the Snow.

tokyo rosemary, Tuesday, 27 November 2018 06:23 (nine months ago) link

xp crossing fingers for Kanopy access

Nhex, Tuesday, 27 November 2018 21:20 (nine months ago) link

I'm in no rush to revisit Wanda, but I'd love to see those shorts on a loaded Criterion (or other label) blu-ray disc.

I Feel Bad About My Butt (j.lu), Tuesday, 27 November 2018 23:43 (nine months ago) link

one month passes...

re Wanda, Elia Kazan and...

Mel Brooks LEGEND pic.twitter.com/IZvkI4mvzp

— Peter Labuza (@labuzamovies) January 9, 2019

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 9 January 2019 18:18 (eight months ago) link

btw Criterion of Wanda drops March 19

https://www.criterion.com/films/29450-wanda

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 9 January 2019 18:21 (eight months ago) link

five months pass...

Olivia Wilde's Booksmart beats you senseless for an hour--appropriate that "You Oughta Know" figures prominently (first time I've ever not hated it)--but I found the last 20 minutes or so (everything post-party) rather sweet, and I'd guardedly recommend it.

clemenza, Saturday, 29 June 2019 22:44 (two months ago) link

I agree it's an often fraught movie but this is a strange thread in which to post the criticism. It would work in the x movie thread.

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 29 June 2019 23:04 (two months ago) link

I liked booksmart enough that I was bummed it didn’t make me laugh much. It was an 11am showing on a Sunday and the rest of the audience weren’t laughing either so the circumstances were tough. idk it was pretty much exactly this tho

these are the only jokes in like 90% of movies now pic.twitter.com/Qap6VJIK6O

— Nicole Silverberg (@nsilverberg) June 16, 2019

shhh / let peaceful like things (wins), Saturday, 29 June 2019 23:13 (two months ago) link

(xpost) I sometimes post thoughts in the last-x thread, but I usually try to find something a bit more specific...not that this is all that specific, but it's the best I could do without starting a new thread (which the film may warrant--as much as Eighth Grade, I'd say).

clemenza, Saturday, 29 June 2019 23:28 (two months ago) link

In retrospect, you're right to keep it here; like you, I think it's not as solid as Eighth Grade.

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 29 June 2019 23:35 (two months ago) link

What I liked best: that the film ends up aligning itself with the time-honored tradition of high school movies that argue there's-more-uniting-us-than-separating-us (which, in the here and now, when you're actually in high school, is a complete fantasy; it's only credible with some time and perspective--and maybe not even then, but it's a nice thought).

One thing that leaves me at a complete loss: where the line of acceptability is for over-the-top caricature. The two gay students...If Chris Rock (or fill-in-the-blank) tried something like that, he'd be run out of town. It doesn't outrage me or anything--I basically never get outraged at the movies, just bored--I'm just curious. If there's controversy over these two characters, it hasn't reached me.

clemenza, Saturday, 29 June 2019 23:41 (two months ago) link

You misread that sentence; it's less polished than Eight Grade (in that it's like a bulldozer), but I think it's a more interesting film.

clemenza, Saturday, 29 June 2019 23:43 (two months ago) link

(I'm talking about the two guys--maybe the gay lead is seen as a fair trade-off.)

clemenza, Saturday, 29 June 2019 23:47 (two months ago) link

two months pass...

A rewatch of Wandayesterday, and that educational short by Barbara Loden about the frontier mentioned above. It's halfway into her interview w/ Dick Cavett from 1970 before the other guests chime in with questions -- Jimmy Breslin and Howard Cosell.

The loser thief Wanda hooks up with is treated with surprising depth, I think, w/out letting him off the hook or painting him as anything but damaged and cruel.

I hadn't realized Loden stayed married to Elia Kazan from '67 til her death; I thought they split up at some point.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 9 September 2019 16:21 (six days ago) link

Also, I've been to the religious theme park that Wanda and Mr Dennis visit. It's in Waterbury CT, and is essentially in ruins as it closed in 1984.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 9 September 2019 16:29 (six days ago) link

XP According to the You Must Remember This about Loden, they had agreed to divorce when she got her cancer diagnosis.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 9 September 2019 16:31 (six days ago) link

They were more or less separated for a lot of the '70s.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 9 September 2019 16:37 (six days ago) link

pauline kael was so mean to barbara loden in her review

flappy bird, Monday, 9 September 2019 17:03 (six days ago) link

cavett is sort of a prick to her too in that interview

flappy bird, Monday, 9 September 2019 17:03 (six days ago) link

sort of in the way of the era

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 9 September 2019 17:05 (six days ago) link

for sure, tho unusual for Cavett

flappy bird, Monday, 9 September 2019 18:08 (six days ago) link

Not really, bcz he's *trying* to be 1970-woke ("It must be harder to raise money for a film when you're a woman") but then puts his foot in it anyway. Similar Cavett moment in the trailer for the recent Toni Morrison doc. He was nailed by Rick Moranis' namedropping impression on SCTV.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 9 September 2019 18:16 (six days ago) link


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