Much of the conversation at THR’s Women in Entertainment breakfast, held Dec. 9 in Los Angeles, centered on the need for female actors to support each other and fight to gain more opportunities in the industry. The topic was near and dear to the heart of Academy Award-winning actress Geena Davis, who — after more than 30 years in the industry — has a deep understanding of the long road women in Hollywood still have to travel before they equal their male counterparts.
“I happen to have a research institute that’s looked at women’s depictions in film,” said Davis, who is co-founder of the Bentonville Film Festival, which aims to spotlight content produced by women and minorities. “Amazingly, the ratio of male to female characters is exactly the same as it was in 1946. We see The Hunger Games come out and we think … things are changing, but the numbers haven’t changed. So there are obviously still tremendous obstacles to women’s progress.”
THR sat down with Davis during Women in Entertainment to discuss the efforts she has personally made in an effort to counteract the industry’s gender biases. Watch the video above to hear how Davis’ influence has directly impacted the increase of female characters in shows like Fox’s Empire and the upcoming animated film The Little Prince.
“We’re seeing that [movies with leading female characters] very popular. They do very well at the box office,” Davis said. “It’s the natural way that things are going to go. We just need to stop waiting for it to happen and realize that the future is here now.”