My last blog post was on gender parity and the panel that I moderated. Naomi McDougall Jones represented the discipline of film as a filmaker shared these three stats about the role of women in films:
- Of the top 100 Hollywood films in 2014, only 12% featured a leading female character.
- Of the top 100 Hollywood films of the last 13 years, only 4% were directed by women.
- In the 88-year history of the Oscars, only one woman has ever been awarded Best Director.
She is part of the solution and her artist statement is profound.
Get to know Naomi and her upcoming film Imagine I’m Beautiful
Film website: www.imagineimbeautiful.com
Naomi’s Artistic Statement:
As a storyteller, I am driven by the belief that more and more audiences are tired of re-makes and prequels and sequels that have been formulaically assembled under the assumption that a great film is a mathematical equation. I believe there are those who crave what I crave as an audience member: to be genuinely surprised; to have my own prejudices exploded; to leave the theater altered from who I was when I went in.
I believe that my generation has not given up on goofy, joyful, freewheeling optimism even in the face of technology, internet self-invention and post-9/11 world terror. I believe that we are, rather, starving more than ever for stories that will lift our minds to look beyond ourselves; to engage with and improve upon the world around us.
I believe furthermore that we are on the frontier of an unexplored expanse of the female perspective in filmmaking. I am not satisfied that one or two or four women are being given a seat at the table to tell their stories. That happening is good, but it is not good enough.
We do not yet even know what it will look like to actually have a substantial choir of female voices, sharing with richness and diversity the multitudinous facets of the female perspective. I believe that as we are able to share our perspective, to have an artistic dialogue with one another, to save ourselves from the dismissiveness of the “chick flick,” that the very fabric of our society will change for the better, as men and women are presented with a broader perspective.
And I am exhilarated, because, as the traditional distribution models break down, we filmmakers are more keenly positioned than ever to get our work directly into audiences’ hungry hands, bypassing the gatekeepers who have, for so long, dictated the “tastes” of the viewer.
As women and as indie filmmakers, I believe we must come together as strong individual voices and as a community to offer audiences a stronger alternative to the monochrome fare of the mainstream.