Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, London Film Festival Team up

Jeff Lewis

The fall festival will host the institute’s first global symposium and also teams with Women in Film and Television.

The BFI London Film Festival on Tuesday unveiled a collaboration with the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and Women in Film and Television.

The festival will host the Institute’s first Global Symposium on Gender in Media outside the U.S. on Oct. 8, the day after the festival opens with Sarah Gavron’s Suffragette.

Geena Davis will deliver the opening keynote at the symposium, which will be held at London's BFI Southbank. The Institute also will present new global research on the influence of international films on diverse film audiences. One panel will explore the impact of film on global issues concerning women and girls. And a WFTV panel will focus on storytelling from around the world and empowering women and girls through film.

The Geena Davis Institute says it is the only research-based organization working within the media and entertainment industry "to engage, educate and influence the need to dramatically improve gender balance, reduce stereotyping and create diverse female characters in entertainment."

Said Davis: "Media images have a huge impact on our perceptions and on our social and cultural beliefs and behaviors. Our new global study explores how global films may be reinforcing negative gender stereotypes with movie audiences of all ages."

Said BFI CEO Amanda Nevill: "I can’t think of a more perfect or important discussion to be having at this year’s BFI London Film Festival than the issue of gender equality in film, TV and the media. I am very proud we are partnering with the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and Women in Film and Television and feel extremely lucky to be working with such extraordinary and talented women to shine a light on these issues."

The festival in the British capital runs Oct. 7-18.

Twitter: @georgszalai