Women Working Behind the Scenes on Independent Films More Than Blockbusters, Study Says

'Jupiter Ascending' co-director Lana Wachowski
'Jupiter Ascending' co-director Lana Wachowski
 

A new study has revealed that women are far better represented behind the camera on independent films than on big blockbuster movies.

The Independent Women: Behind-the-Scenes Employment on Festival Films in 2013-14 report from the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film, which was released on Tuesday, showed that 23 percent of directors on narratives or documentaries were female, compared with just six percent in the top-grossing films.

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"Considering that only one woman directed a studio film this summer -- Lana Wachowski co-directed Jupiter Ascending -- the opportunities provided by independent films are crucial for women filmmakers and their careers," said executive director Martha Lauzen.

The study focused on domestically and independently produced feature-length documentaries and narrative films screening at 23 festivals, including AFI Fest, the Los Angeles Film Festival, the New York Film Festival, the Sundance Film Festival, the SXSW Film Festival, and the Tribeca Film Festival.

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It went on to reveal that 28 percent of directors working on documentaries and 18 percent of those working on narrative features are women.

The full breakdown of behind-the-scenes roles is as below:

  • 23 percent of directors
  • 22 percent of writers
  • 27 percent of executive producers
  • 33 percent of producers
  • 20 percent of editors
  • 10 percent of cinematographers

Women fared best as producers (33 percent) and executive producers (27 percent). Composers were included in the study for the first time, totaling 10 percent on independents and only two percent in the top-grossing films.

For the full study, click here

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