Women Directed More Major Films in 2020, According to Study

But, it's still not enough.

We're finally seeing the effects of the call for more female directors. In fact, more women fimmakers directed big movies in 2020 than ever. A new study by the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State University showed that out of the top grossing films of the year, 16 percent were helmed by female directors. A clear step above from the 12 women helmed films in 2019.

It's all very good news. But, there's still plenty of work to be done as only 21 percent of directors, writers, producers, executive producers, editors, and cinematographers involved in major projects last year were female.

The record number of women-directed 2020 movies includes Cate Shortland's Black Widow, Patty Jenkins' Wonder Woman sequel, Gina Prince-Bythewood's The Old Guard, and Niki Caro's Mulan to name a few.

"The good news is that we’ve now seen two consecutive years of growth for women who direct," says lead author Dr. Martha Lauzen. "This breaks a recent historical pattern in which the numbers trend up one year and down the next. The bad news is that fully 80% of top films still do not have a woman at the helm."

Early last year, the Oscars made headlines when no female made the cut in the director category. It's also worth pointing out that only five women have earned best director nominations at the Academy Awards.

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Paolo Chua
Associate Style Editor
Paolo Chua is the Associate Style Editor at Esquire Philippines, where he writes about fashion and grooming. Before joining Esquire Philippines, he was a writer at Town & Country Philippines.
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