As 2023 begins, two major academic organizations measuring the progress of inclusion in Hollywood are looking back at the 2022 track record in film.
The Inclusion Initiative USC AnnenbergInclusion in the Director’s Chair report analyzes the gender and race/ethnicity of the directors behind last year’s top 100 films in the US, while the San Diego State Center for the Study of Women in Television and FilmThe most recent ‘Celluloid Ceiling’ report examined the employment of women in important behind-the-scenes roles in both the 100 and 250 highest-grossing films at the domestic box office.
In the one category shared by both studies — percentage of female directors in the top 100 films — the schools came up with slightly different counts (possibly because of the criteria each group uses to compile its Box Office Mojo sample). SDSU reported that 11 percent of helmers were female in 2022 (up from 12 percent in 2021 and a peak of 16 percent in 2020), while USC had 9 percent in 2022 (up from 12.7 percent in 2021 and a peak of 15 percent in 2020). 2020). The total number of women directing a top 100 movie — 10 of 111 directors — was small enough for USC to list them by name: Olivia Newman (Where the crawfish sing), Gina Prince-Bythewood (The Queen of Women), Olivia Wilde (Don’t worry honey), Jessica M. Thompson (The invitation), Kat Coiro (Marry me), Rosalind Ross (Father Stu), Halina Reyn (Bodies Bodies Bodies), Kasi Lemmons (Whitney Houston: I want to dance with someone), Chinonye Chukwu (Until) and Maria Schrader (She said).
“Five years after #MeToo exploded and two years after the murder of George Floyd, Hollywood has shown little change for women and underrepresented directors — particularly women of color,” said AI2 founder Stacy L. Smith in a statement accompanying the report. USC, which noted that only three women of color—Prince-Bythewood, Lemmons, and Chukwu—directed a top 100 movie in 2022, and during 16 years of AI2 research, women of color directed just 21 (1.3 percent) of 1,600 films. “We would like to see not only tradition change, but also the hiring practices that continue to marginalize women and people of color as directors.”
The SDSU study found that films with at least one female director hire more women for key behind-the-scenes roles than films directed only by men: Among women-directed films, women accounted for 53 percent of writers (compared to 12 percent of the writers). male helmets), 39 percent of editors (compared to 19 percent), 19 percent of cinematographers (compared to 4 percent), and 18 percent of composers (compared to 6 percent).
Overall, the proportion of women in key behind-the-camera roles (directors, writers, producers, executive producers, editors, and cinematographers) for the 250 best films since the first “Celluloid Ceiling” report was published 25 years ago, 25 years ago increased from 17 percent in 1998 to 24 percent in 2022.
“Given the number of panels, investigative reports and handwrings devoted to this issue over the past two and a half decades, one would expect more substantial gains,” CSWTF founder Martha Lauzen said in a statement. “It took the accumulation of more than two decades of advocacy, investigative reports and an EEOC study to double the percentage of female drivers from 9 percent to 18 percent, and women are still dramatically underrepresented in that role…. It’s easy to overlook the bigger story of women as filmmakers, as the numbers can rise a little one year, only to fall a little the next. We are distracted by the incremental movement of the numbers from year to year, but often fail to notice that there is no substantial profit to be had in the long run.”