It’s no secret that both the film and television industries have their fair share of gender disparity on screen, but the problem doesn’t end there. A quick look behind the camera shows that women hold significantly fewer positions as associate and executive producers than their male colleagues.
Out of the top 100 grossing movies of 2016, only 19% were produced, 14% were edited, 11% were written, and just 4% were directed by women.
Combined with the fact that 60% of television programs have 4 or fewer women in behind the scenes roles and the issue is clear: women are marginalized - but not backing away - from opportunities both on and off screen.
A Few of Our Favorites
Statistics aside, female producers in film and television are responsible for some of our favorite content. From blockbuster films and hit TV shows to indie movies and docs, women are hustling to create the best content in our world today.
Mira Nair, Mirabai Films
Mira Nair is an Indian-American producer and filmmaker, and the founder of Mirabai Films, a production company specializing in films for international audiences around Indian society. She is well-known for films including Monsoon Wedding, The Namesake, and Salaam Bombay!, nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Mira Nair is a veteran producer in both documentary and feature film, and currently lives in New York City.
Helen Estabrook is an American film producer and the woman behind the films Labor Day, Men, Women & Children and Whiplash, which earned her an Oscar nomination for Best Picture. Before heading to Los Angeles, she considered a future as an actress but reconsidered - and we’re glad she did!
Megan Ellison, Annapurna Pictures
Megan Ellison is the producer behind the Oscar nominated films American Hustle and Zero Dark Thirty, and was recently named one of the 100 most influential people in the world. She is the first woman and the fourth person of all time to receive two Oscar nominations for Best Picture in one year, for her work in 2014 on Her and American Hustle.
Salma Hayek, Ventanarosa
In addition to being a world-class actress, Salma Hayek is the founder of the production company Ventanarosa (translated from Spanish to mean “red window”). Since its inception in 1999, Hayek has produced films such as In the Time of the Butterflies and Frida, which, along with her on-screen portrayal of Frida Kahlo, won her two Oscars. Hayek was also a key player in the adaptation of the Colombian telenova Yo Soy Betty La Fea, otherwise known as Ugly Betty.