Infographic Highlights Lack of Women Directors

lack of female movie directors It’s no secret that women remain significantly underrepresented in the filmmaking industry, especially when it comes to female directors. A recent infographic from streaming movie service Fandor serves as a stark illustration of just how few women directors there are—and, even more unsettling, an emerging decline in these already low numbers that seems to indicate a troubling trend.

Take a look at some of the stats we found particularly eye-opening (and, we’re not going to lie, more than a bit depressing):

  • Women made up 5% of Hollywood directors in 2011, down from 7% in 2010 and 9% in 1998.
  • Women directors have been nominated for an Oscar 4 times in 85 years.
  • There are 15.24 male directors for every 1 female director.
  • Females direct more documentaries (34.5%) than narrative films (16.9%).

Check out Fandor’s infographic for more startling stats, as well as a nod to several successful women indie film directors including Mira Nair, Jane Campion, Sofia Coppola and Lisa Cholodenko.

women directors infographic

This is a powerful visual and clearly those stats need to change.

In light of the above, it’s especially encouraging to see companies like female-friendly Tangerine Entertainment, co-founded by Abby Hoffman and Anne Hubbell, getting ready to launch “Lucky Them” this fall. We can’t describe what they do any better than they do, so here’s a snippet from their corporate mission statement:

Tangerine Entertainment is a film production company focusing on commercially viable, critically acclaimed stories for all audiences, with an emphasis on female filmmakers and strong roles for women. Tangerine has a clear and specific agenda aimed at increasing the presence of smart, complex women both behind and in front of the camera.

The imbalance created by the lack of gender parity offers an opportunity for Tangerine to take advantage of relevant stories and distinct voices found in this underserved community. Utilizing all social media tools and creating grassroots opportunities for personal interaction, Tangerine aims to develop a fan base, while simultaneously creating work for that audience.

Another don’t miss voice in the industry is IndieWire’s Melissa Silverstein and her Women and Hollywood blog championing women in the industry.

These are just a few of the people passionate about women in the film industry and they and others are working to help aspiring female filmmakers and directors, as well as women in general, succeed in becoming resilient and empowered and making their dreams come true. It’s time.

Were you surprised by Fandor’s findings? And what do you think needs to happen in order to help more women become film directors? We’d love to hear your thoughts—after all, we’re in this together!

Image by photographerglen via CC

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