Sexism: Institutional in Hollywood?

hollywood_sign_1Remember the ad: You have come a long way, baby.  Well, how about women’s degree of progress in the film industry, both mainstream and indie.

Variety reports in its July 29 issue:

The numbers suggest that women still have a long road to travel to achieve equality. Exact statistics on employment throughout the production fields are hard to come by, but those that exist are not encouraging.

Mainstream Hollywood:

In 2013, women comprised the following percentage on the 250 top-grossing films, according to a study by the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film:

2% of composers

4% of sound designers

9% of supervising sound editors

2% of special effects supervisors

5% of visual effects supervisors


The indie world

The independent film world is slightly more diverse and slightly more egalitarian.

Of the 1,163 people working behind the camera on 82 U.S. films at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, almost 30% were women.

Females comprised 19.7% of cinematographers and 27.9% of editors on those productions.

As the numbers suggest, institutional sexism still exists.


Indie Directors:

My study of all the films in the Dramatic Competition series at the Sundance Film Fest over the past 30 years, from 1985 to 2014, shows that 20 percent of its directors were women, or one out of five films.