With Danny Boyle confirmed to direct Bond 25 and rumors of Idris Elba being next in line as the British spy after Daniel Craig, we’ve decided to flip this male-centric 007 talk by speculating what the Bond world would look like if a woman were behind the lens.
After all, there are countless female directors who know their way around gritty, “masculine” subject matter appreciated by both male and female audiences, so why shouldn’t / couldn’t it happen? With this in mind, here are the female directors we think would nail Bond 25:
According to Screen Rant, The Hurt Locker director was even urged by the former Sony Pictures chief Amy Pascal to direct a Bond adventure. Although she dismissed the idea, Bigelow has proven herself to be a true master of big budget productions.
Jenkins absolutely killed it with the portrayal of Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) and her team of Amazon warriors, so why shouldn’t she be able to deal with Daniel Craig amidst a series of explosions and gun fights? Just imagine how much fiercer the Bond girls would be.
If Spectre taught viewers anything about James Bond, it’s that the franchise had reverted back to its traditional misogynistic leanings. Perhaps for Bond 25 the film could use the magic touch of the Mulan master Caro, with her gender-inclusive sets and focus on strong male and female leads.
Skyfall was another of the franchise’s flicks that was criticised for its portrayal of women, with each major female character being killed off to motivate Bond’s actions. Perhaps then DuVernay’s experience making movies and TV shows that have been firmly grounded in race and female power would add a nice touch to the next Bond instalment.
While rumors of The Night Manager star Tom Hiddleston becoming the next James Bond were flying around in 2016, why don’t we start our own fresh rumors linking the show’s director Bier as the next in line to direct Bond 25? After all, she’s already proven her ability to tackle big budgets and “masculine” themes.
We’d love to see the actress-turned-director handed the reigns for the next 007 flick, mostly because she previously spoke out about how “women are pigeonholed into making ‘certain types of movies’ due to ‘misguided distrust’ from executives”. We’re sure Asante would be the ideal candidate to prove otherwise.
No doubt the award-winning Campion could shake (not stir) the franchise up with her unique vision on gender politics and the female gaze. Maybe we’d see even more strong female leads alongside Bond (a la Judi Dench in Goldeneye).
Another director with big-budget finesse, Taylor-Johnson raked in more than half a billion dollars for Universal Pictures with Fifty Shades of Grey (not that the Bond franchise has ever had an issue with selling tickets). If it were to ever happen though, she’d have to switch silver chains for golden guns.
James Gunn – director and writer of the GotG Marvel movies – who has been forced out of his position at the helm of the Guardians of the Galaxy 3 after a series of distasteful tweets resurfaced regarding topics such as pedophilia. Whatever your take on this whole mess is, we’re going to go right ahead and suggest a number of women who we think are more up to the job.
In the wake of Hollywood’s sexual misconduct scandal, gender equality remains a central theme within the industry. While female filmmakers like Lady Bird’s Greta Gerwig, Wonder Woman’s Patty Jenkins, and A Wrinkle in Time’s Ava DuVernay may be recognized as some of the greatest talents working today, a study by San Diego State University’s Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film suggests Hollywood still has a long way to go.
The study discovered the jaw-dropping statistic that women held just 18% of behind-the-scenes film jobs including directors, writers, producers, executive producers, editors, and cinematographers in the top grossing movies of the past year. The figures have hardly budged since 1998. Out of the 250 top-grossing domestic films, just 1% employed 10 or more women, while 70% employed 10 or more men. Furthermore, 30% of the titles featured zero or one woman in behind-the-scenes jobs, while none of the films had fewer than one man.
Rather than simply sitting back and despairing at these dismal figures, a series of organizations and initiatives have launched to encourage gender parity both in front of and behind the lens.
Seeking to prove actions speak louder than words are the Film Fatales – a community of female feature film & TV directors who meet regularly to share resources, collaborate on projects, and discuss relevant topics in their careers. Currently there are over 500 members in Los Angeles and New York, and hundreds more across Europe, Australia, and Africa.
Film Fatales Founder Leah Meyerhoff thinks the statistics for female filmmakers are too low. “Half of our society is women. Half of the audiences are women. Half of the creative content needs to be made by women. The more that women and people of color can see reflections of themselves on screen, and the more that straight white men can learn to empathize with other subject positions through watching a variety of stories unfold, the healthier our society will be as a whole.”
That’s where Film Fatales comes in. So far the company has programmed over 250 films directed by women at 90 independent theaters and organized over 100 panel discussions, workshops, and networking events in partnership with festivals such as Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, Toronto, and more. “By expanding the landscape of storytelling to include more underrepresented voices, Film Fatales continues to bring new and exciting films to the big screen.”
Meanwhile, the Alliance of Women Directors offers many programs to benefit its members. Chair of the organization, Jennifer Warren, claims that the non-profit’s primary goal is to achieve parity in the workplace for female directors. “As an organization, we are fighting for change in the hiring practices. One example would be our partnering with the ACLU in identifying discriminatory patterns within the studios.
“In addition, we have outreach to all the film festivals, which provides our members with various perks, including lower entry fees; we have affiliations with many of the professional organizations; we have educational programs and panels with high-visibility directors; and we have different kinds of shadowing programs all aimed at getting our members employment.”
Over in the UK, Women in Media provides networking opportunities and professional development for directors in the film and TV industries. Executive director Tema L. Staig outlined the company’s reason behind the launch of its female-focused IMDB-style list, the so-called WiMCrewList.
“For the longest time, we heard that people just couldn’t find women in the crew. For some reason, even though I knew tons of women, they were invisible to many decision makers. With the WiMCrewList, women can add their IMDB, resume, reels, SoundCloud, mini bio, if they are union / non union, and the rest. Our members can add all their credits, which is necessary when it comes to decision makers vetting new talent.”
The Director List is a hub for finding female directors and their work. As a filmmaker herself, founder and editor Destri Martino sought out the work of seasoned female directors to provide inspiration and guidance for her own projects, but was often disappointed by the low number of women she found.
“While doing research for a masters thesis back in 2005, I realized there were a lot more working directors than mainstream media coverage”. Out of this realization, The Director List was born. Since then, the list of female directors with demonstrable experience in features, TV, and/or large-scale commercials and music videos has jumped to 1,000 members and growing.
In addition to the database, the site provides news, photos, video, and a community focused on the film, TV, and video projects women are actively creating around the world.
Elsewhere, Reel Angels has been breaking boundaries as an agency that represents female technical crews for film, TV, and entertainment events. The company claims to promotes gender equality in technical departments by providing a credible and proven resource of top-end talent.
Lulu Elliott, founder of RA Agency, told Film Daily how the company exists at a time when there has never been a more opportune moment to employ female talent in film and TV. “By representing women, we see ourselves as leaders in the ongoing progress towards full gender parity across the industries.”
These organizations’ efforts haven’t been going unnoticed. Since 2016, Telefilm Canada, the powerful, well-funded film financing arm of the Canadian government, unveiled its ambitious drive to gender equality in the film sector by 2020. It seems the initiative is already having effect, as a 2017 study shows a 27% increase in agency-backed projects directed by women since 2015.
While gender counting in filmmaking crews & casts will undoubtedly remain a hot topic in 2018, it remains to be seen whether a world in which crews maintain 50% representation between genders across the entire industry is actually desirable, or even possible. And what about those who identify as something else entirely? Film Daily recommends the underrepresented feline contingent in entertainment production create a non-profit to promote human-cat parity by 2026.
Who runs the world? Actually, the less fun answer is a complex web of secretive government bodies, wealthy tycoons, and illuminati shapeshifters. But we here at FutureFemme are all about fun and if we’re talking about the society we consider to be reality, we say it’s run by girls. Yes, women rule the place, including the entertainment industry that’s teaming with wildly talented femmes.
If you’re an aspiring TV writer, film producer, or acting powerhouse, you’ll likely find inspiration in the musings of the industry’s fiercest females and where better to find said musings than on Twitter? The social media platform is a breeding ground for creative thoughts, inspirational stories, and political debate. It’s with this in mind that we’ve decided to provide you with a rundown of the best female creatives to follow on Twitter. Let’s do this!
Did we mention we’re huge fans of Issa Rae’s? No? Well let us tell you again! Rae has built quite the comedic empire from the ground up, starting out with her Awkward Black Girl web series and launching into the present with the HBO hit Insecure. The TV show creator is outspoken about racial issues in the entertainment industry and her Twitter feed is dedicated to championing actors and filmmakers of color, keeping followers updated on current projects and happenings, and posting truly funny and personable musings.
If you thought monsters, zombies, aliens, and everything else that goes bump in the night were boys’ interests, you would be sadly mistaken, as shown by Gale Anne Hurd’s eclectic resume. As producer of such sci-fi classics as Aliens and The Terminator, as well as TV shows like Fear the Walking Dead, Hurd’s passion for such genre beats is reflected in her Twitter account, which provides followers with updates on all of her new projects (between snortworthy memes that we dare you to not chuckle at).
As a former studio exec for Disney, Nina Jacobson’s been involved in films like The Chronicles of Narnia, The Sixth Sense, and the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. When she was fired from the media powerhouse, did Jacobson let that get her down? Fuck no! She went on to create her own production company, Color Force, and ended up producing the Hunger Games movies, because that’s the level of badassery we’re dealing with here. As Raindance put it, “Her Twitter is informative (bringing attention to the mistreatment of women, LGBTQ, people of color in both the film industry, and society as a whole) and fun (she was sorted into Ravenclaw by Pottermore).”
Yas queen!! Making up half of the Broad City duo (the one with that sweet angel ass) is Abbi Jacobson a.k.a. the Val of our hearts. Her Twitter page is an exciting mix of Broad City posts, news on her upcoming projects, political news stories, and TV show updates. Informative and entertaining, all at once!
As many have outlined on Twitter and beyond, Ryan Murphy’s 80s ballroom show Pose shows what happens when trans actors are given a foot in the door. With the wildly talented and outrageously beautiful Indya Moore taking the role of the sweet Angel among a cast of five trans actors, her Twitter page is filled with updates on the show, as well as plenty of posts of portraits and artwork. With a face like that, who wouldn’t self-promote?
As one of the most influential and important filmmakers in the industry today, Ava DuVernay is the first African-American woman to win the Best Director Prize at Sundance Film Festival (Middle of Nowhere), the first black female director to be nominated for a Golden Globe Award (Selma), and first woman of color to direct a live-action film with a budget of over $100 million (A Wrinkle in Time). With so much under her belt and her influence only set to grow, DuVernay’s Twitter page is worth a follow if you’d like to stay updated on her latest projects and news about diversity and political issues in Hollywood.
If you’re interested in the TV industry in any way, Shonda Rhimes is a great one to follow on Twitter. As the producer & screenwriter responsible for hit shows such as Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, and Scandal, Rhimes is a great one to follow as she keeps everyone updated on all of her projects, while promoting news about people of color in the entertainment industry.
A wonder woman in her own right, director Patty Jenkins helmed one of 2017’s most successful blockbusters – the remake of DC’s Wonder Woman. With the Gal Gadot-starring sequel on the way, you’d be worth following her on Twitter for the updates alone.
The stunningly talented Trace Lysette has blown us away with her acting talents in such hit shows as Amazon’s Transparent and FX’s recent Pose (which you should totally add to your watchlist if you haven’t already). If you’re looking for updates on the finest LGBTQI talent as well as trans issues in the entertainment industry, Trace Lysette’s Twitter page is a fountain of information. Give her a follow!
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced its new members and with 926 new people joining, its given 49% of the new membership to women and 38% to people of color (it’s about time). To mark the organization finally diversifying its members pool, let’s take a look at ten of the most kickass women of color who have just become members of the Academy.
Ava DuVernay became the first black woman to be nominated for an Oscar for Best Film and the first black woman to be nominated for Best Director at the Golden Globes too, for her film Selma. While these should not be milestones and should just be the norm, it still goes to show that DuVernay is absolutely smashing it.
She may only be 14 but Wallis has already published four books and starred in the remake of Annie (for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe).
Pinkett Smith is by now surely one of America’s most recognizable actresses, having started out her film career in 1993’s Menace II Society and progressing up the ladder to more recent films like Girls Trip.
The UK is currently celebrating 100 years of women having the right to vote and the challenging fight required to reach that point. In fighting for their rights, the Suffragettes took radical action and were made up of countless female agitators who refused to back down and who believed in women’s rights so ardently, they were prepared to sacrifice their lives for it.
Be it fictional depictions, portrayal of real life women, or a blend of the two, there have been some powerful women fighting for change shown on screen. Here are eight of our absolute favorite female agitators depicted in TV & film.
Good Girls Revolt (2015)
The sadly short lived Amazon Originals series is based on the real life revolt female researchers performed in protest of the sexism they perceived in the Newsweek offices in the early 70s. Shrewdly fictionalized as News of the Week magazine, the show centers around the second wave feminist movement of the time and within it, characters Patti and Jane are smart, tough, and outspoken in fighting for the respect they deserve for their work and for equality in the workplace.
Queen Sugar (2016-)
Nova Bordelon (Rutina Wesley)
Not only is Nova a journalist and Black Lives Matter activist shrewdly finding a myriad of ways with which to strive for change, but the character of Ava DuVernay’s critically acclaimed drama also has firm roots within her community, highlighting the importance of change at a local level. She’s ferocious, passionate, intelligent, and a pillar of strength.
La femme du général (Genica Athanasiou)
Germaine Dulac’s classic surrealist film remains one of the most radical feminist films ever made. The movie’s central female character is about as subversive as they come – particularly for the time the film was made and released – in resisting the power of a king and the desires of a priest. There’s even a sequence in which she holds a burning bra above her head in protest! In 1928! Unsurprisingly, the film was subsequently banned, with the British Board of Film Censors somehow conceding it’s simultaneously “meaningless” and “objectionable”.
Erin Brockovich (2000)
Erin Brockovich (Julia Roberts)
Steven Soderbergh’s powerful biopic is based on the true life exploits of environmental activist Erin Brockovich – an unemployed single mom who single-handedly takes on a Californian power company accused of polluting a city’s water supply. Erin refuses to back down, shut up, or step back when people with more power demand her to, and she continues to shake down a complex of corruption until she can finally see justice and accountability in sight.
Marianne & Juliane (1981)
Margarethe von Trotta’s German New Wave classic explores a bond between two sisters and their radically different approaches to the fight for women’s rights. While Juliane uses words and information as a journalist to spread her message, Marianne is a militant street fighter who refuses to back down or be polite. The film offers a critical female perspective on a violent time in West German history.
Born in Flames (1983)
Providing a futuristic glimpse at a feminist uprising, Lizzie Borden’s transgressive science fiction film has countless female agitators at its heart, but we have a particular soft spot for Honey – the soft spoken Radio Phoenix leader who joins forces with other women to implement a full on revolution for equal rights. The film pays a loving tribute to the contributions of women of color in political change that’s not often seen on screen.
Norma Rae (1979)
Norma Rae (Sally Field)
Based on Crystal Lee Sutton’s experiences of organizing a union with her coworkers at a textile mill in North Carolina, Field depicts a rebel-rousing, working-class woman standing up for workers’ rights despite the obvious dangers and challenges involved. As well as portraying a formidable woman fighting for rights, the film also deals with further issues of sexual freedom and institutionalized racism that sees Norma remaining resilient against various structures of oppression.
Maud Watts (Carey Mulligan)
A fictional rendering of many of the pioneering women involved in the British fight for the right to vote, Maud faces repeated challenges as she continues to battle for women’s rights, including being thrown out by her husband and fired from her job. The experiences Maud endures – including being brutally force fed while on hunger strike – reflects some of the real life experiences the Suffragettes went through in their fight.