Women in Film: We’ve Got a Long Way to Go

CaptureLily Rothman wrote an excellent article earlier this month in TIME about the utter lack of women behind the scenes in the film industry as well as the lackluster portrayal of women on screen. She writes:

Last week, the New York Film Academy put together a look at the way women appear in Hollywood movies, inspired by the blockbuster success of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire in its first weekend. Today, with the knowledge that Catching Fire held strong throughout Thanksgiving weekend and that Disney’s Frozen was also a smash hit, it’s worth revisiting the numbers that went into that chart (the full version of which is below)—because, despite this weekend’s proof positive that women don’t have to be box-office bummers, the data make it clear that there’s a long way to go until men and women are equal on screen.

Here are a few highlights from the chart:

  • More than a quarter of female actors get partially naked on screen in the top 500 films from 2007-2012; less than 10% of male actors do.

  • Those movies had an average of 2.25 men for every woman.

  • When a woman directs, there’s a 10% increase in women on screen, but there are 5 men in the film industry for every woman.

  • The top 16 single-film paychecks all went to men.

  • More than three quarters of Oscars voters are men; four times as many men were nominated for Oscars in 2013.

Rothman goes on to note that movie-going audiences are split nearly in half by gender. The article later reveals that only 15% of the top 250 movies produced in 2012 were written by women.

It seems likely–though I have no numbers to support this–that fewer women go out for writing and directing roles than men. But certainly the numbers of those who succeed are nowhere near the number who try.

Women have a harder path to success in above-the-line film jobs than men do. This is an accepted truth.

What will you do to change it?

Check out this infographic from the New York Film Academy for more:


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