With the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements that awakened Hollywood, should we expect seeing more and more involvement in women’s part in the cinema industry? Most certainly, yes. And most of these leading females in the cinema industry now have directed and casting roles, which is kind of rare in the industry. Plus, they have the capacity to influence and readjust those gender gaps in the industry, now occupying such important roles in the filmmaking process. While #MeToo has cast a shade over the glam in Hollywood and brought to attention the disparities and vulnerabilities there, these women are here to influence and change the film industry in the future, with daring steps still noticeable in 2018. But let’s see who those women that made a change in 2018 are.
With such a successful movie in her portfolio now, she couldn’t be missing from out top. Patty Jenkins successfully touched everybody’s nerve in 2018 with the Wonder Woman movie. The context was just perfect, but more than this, she is a wonderful female director with a top of experience in the industry and now is able to speak up about Hollywood’s most burning matters: pay gap, gender gap, and traditional gender roles. According to this Variety Interview, Patty only expected her movie to be received as yet another superhero movie. But still, for everybody, it has become so much more. It has become a statement, a movement. Besides, Patty is the first female filmmaker to sign with DC Studios. The first female-led superhero movie directed by the first female director in DC… it hit such a milestone, but it shouldn’t really have, as patty claims. According to her, we should have been able to witness such developments in the film industry a long time ago, not only after the aforementioned movements.
Debra Granik remains in 2018 just as uncompromising as we remember her. And with her “Leave no Trace” movie she once again puts in the light those people who aren’t easy to see and maybe don’t want to be seen. She is well aware that, oftentimes, the American movies focus entirely on glam and fabulousness of life. But life it’s not always like this. Life is a struggle, poverty, and pain. And through Leave no Trace, this is specifically what she emphasizes. Telling the story of a homeless father and his daughter, their daily struggles but also small joys that come by being surrounded by nature in the heart of a National Park, these are those details that make the move so incredibly sensible and heart-warming.
But Debra knows it well that the slow career advancement that she experienced over the years is largely due to her gender. And the context today gives her just enough expression space and opportunities to cast a clearer light on those stories who would have been ignored, otherwise. The heart-breaking Leave no Trace successfully paints a candid image of these issues.
Ava DuVernay is an American film director, filmmaker and screenwriter win the directing award in the US dramatic competition at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, being at the time the first black female director to win this recognition. Her 2018 movie, a Wrinkle in Time was released in March 2018 and tells the story of a family after the discovery of a new form of space travel. The movie had mixed reviews, but the $33 million box office, second after the Black Panther, made out of this movie a celebrity. However, the critics emphasized the overuse of CGI and several plot holes in the script. But the movie is nonetheless a celebration of female empowerment and like many other powerful females in other industries, Ava DuVernay is still about to make history in the film industry.
The first black woman nominated for an Oscar for the Best Adapted Screenplay category, Dee Rees is certainly making history is the film industry. The 2017 Mudbound movie is telling the story of two men returning home after WWII in the Mississippi county side, their struggles with re-adjusting to the post-world society and the daily racism they face. The movie is putting a huge accent on social issues with great importance nowadays, long after the story per se takes place.
The movie beautifully paints the racism, war, female solidarity in the post-war Mississippi but the topics are so relevant today that is scary. And Dee Rees bravely speaks about those. Maybe in the era of change that we are witnessing, her movie will make a difference and her career will take a new, unexpected and highly successful turn.
The director of 2017 The Beguiled, notorious for the Virgins Suicide and other emblematic movies is certainly one female director to pay attention to in the following years. Telling the story of a group of young girls admitted in Miss Martha Farnsworth’s Seminary for Young Ladies who unexpectedly have to care for a wounded Union Soldier at the school in 1864. The matriarch figure, the female power, the sexual excitement that the solider (played by Colin Farrell) raises in the young ladies secluded in a boring school, these are all topics explored without a trace of shame or guilt by the extraordinary Sofia Coppola.
The handsome soldier is nonetheless an evil manipulator, but the story that develops from his arrival is undoubtedly candid, terrifying and the slowly building drama puts Sofia Coppola once again in the spotlight in the movie industry.
These are some of the noticeable female filmmakers that made themselves noticed at various film festivals and events. In the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements context, these female filmmakers are expected to change the film industry to its core. The sensitivity with which the topics are approached, the candid view on characters and the incommensurable feeling of empowerment in the movies directed by these females certainly make a real difference in Hollywood and not only.