Archive for the ‘women in film’ Category

A Familiar Story

11th August 2009

The Writers Guild of America (West) has published the 2009 Hollywood Writers Report, called Rewriting an All-Too-Familiar Story?, which looks at the statistics regarding the employment of screenwriters in Hollywood broken down by gender, race and age.

What’s notable is that the percentage of women writing for film/television is not improving, and there is some evidence that their earnings are decreasing (these figures only go as far as 2007 before the current change in the economy). The situation among writers from a minority background has improved by a barest margin.

The following are some highlights from the report:

Women Writers’ Overall Employment Share Remains Largely Flat

Between 2003 and 2007, gains for women writers have not exceeded one percentage point in any of the employment areas. Women, who account for slightly more than 50 percent of the U.S. population, remain underrepresented in television employment by 2 to 1 and in film employment by nearly 3 to 1.

Earnings Gender Gap in TV

Women television writers earned about the same in 2007 ($82,604) as they did at the beginning of the five-year report period in 2003 ($82,000), despite spikes in earnings in 2005 and 2006. The television earnings of white male writers, by contrast, increased by nearly $4,000 over the report period (from $84,300 to $87,984), after peaking at $100,000 in 2005 and 2006.

Earnings Gender Gap in Film

The gender earnings gap in film for 2007 ($41,724) was the largest since at least 2003. Film earnings for women were down from the 2003 figure of $62,500 in 2005 ($50,000), 2006 ($55,500), and 2007 ($57,151). By contrast, the earnings of white male writers increased by more than $8,000 over the period, from $90,476 in 2003 to $98,875 in 2007.

White Males Continue to Dominate in Overall Earnings; Minority Earnings Approach Those for Women

Minority writers earned $87,652 in 2007, compared to $90,686 for women and $112,500 for white males. The $24,848 gap between minority earnings and white male earnings in 2007 represents nearly a $14,000 reduction in the $38,490 gap evident in 2005, the last year covered in the previous report. Meanwhile, the overall earnings gap between minority writers and women writers closed to its smallest point in 2007 ($3,034), which improved upon a much wider gap in 2005 ($12,868). Nonetheless, the overall earnings of white male writers significantly outpaced those of the other groups throughout the study period, reflecting the continuing dominance of white males in the industry

Gender Conference in UK

6th May 2009

The Stage reports that the Sphinx Theatre Company in London is hosting a conference entitled “Vamps, Vixens and Feminists – The Elephant in the Room” to debate issues around the employment and representation of women in theatre, film and television.

It’s funded by the Arts Council England, and is being organised in collaboration with industry bodies, including Equity and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain.

Sue Parrish, artistic director of Sphinx, said the introduction of the Gender Equality Duty in 2007 – which states that public bodies must take steps to pro-actively promote equality between women and men – had presented an “opportunity to raise these issues and be heard”.

She said two years since the directive came into force, ACE was still in the process of implementing the Gender Equality Duty, and added: “The event seemed like a wonderful opportunity for professionals from different parts of the industry to get together and really discuss what is going on and what might be done.”

The conference will feature contributors such as playwright Tanika Gupta and Katherine Rake – the chief executive of gender equality campaigning body the Fawcett Society.

Parrish said that she had deliberately avoided inviting political figures, including Equality and Human Rights Commission chair Trevor Phillips, because she did not want to hear “a lot of empty rhetoric from politicians who are having to make a fairly bland statement”.

The conference will be made up of a number of panels, including one that will address cultural and historical female stereotypes, led by Manchester University professor Vivien Gardner. Other panels will focus on writers, with contributions from Writers’ Guild president David Edgar and screenwriter Tracy Brabin, and actresses, led by Kate Buffery, who has been at the forefront of an Equity campaign to address the inequalities faced by older female performers.

The conference will take place in the Olivier Theatre at the National on Tuesday, June 16 from 10am until 1.30pm. Places are free and can be booked by emailing or by calling 020 7401 9994 by Friday June 5.

Interview with Kirsten

20th March 2009

The Southern Star has an interview with Irish writer/director Kirsten Sheridan today.


17th February 2009

All members of the Guild are invited to attend The Year of Women in Theatre: a catalytic project that aims to unite the theatre industry in a permanent redress of gender-balance in the onstage artform.

The 2010 PROJECT Development Meetings will take place in two locations:

The Twenty-Ten Group – a pro-active, non-producing organisation – is promoting the 2010 PROJECT. It aims to make contact with every artistic director, associate and freelance director, producer, programmer, playwright, publisher, agent, casting director and other industry professionals across Ireland to inspire a concerted, creative response to this challenge.

The industry needs to redress the imbalance of the employment of women actors, directors and writers, and to create full and fair representations of women and womanhood in society.

If you wish to attend the Dublin Project Development Meetings please RSVP at info @

Otherwise email (twentytengroup @ Helen Alexander, the 2010 PROJECT Director, or phone her on: +44-20-8543-4085 / +44-7876-128-418

Irish Women’s Film Festival

12th February 2009

Paris Voice reports that the Centre Cultural Irlandais in Paris will host the 2nd Irish Women’s Film Festival in Paris on September 29th.

The debut festival was hosted by the Irish Chapter of Women in Film and Television in Dublin last October

The one-day Festival, which begins at 10:30 A.M. on September 29th, will feature films and filmmakers from WFTV Ireland and aims to bring together the European film community as well as aid women filmmakers in finding ways to collaborate in the future. The festival is part of the celebration of “le Cinéma au Feminin” and will be opened by Irish Ambassador Ms. Anne Anderson. Writers and directors will have the opportunity to introduce their work as well offer workshops to current film students.