Ava DuVernay On Why She's Not Ashamed Of Labeling Herself A 'Black Woman Filmmaker'

06/16/2015 05:44 pm ET | Updated Jun 16, 2015

In the latest installment of AOL’s MAKERS series, Ava DuVernay, the director of “Selma," shared her thoughts on the disparity of women in film, and why there’s now a greater opportunity for women to break into the industry.

“This industry is no longer what it used to be. The gatekeeper’s gates are rusting,” DuVernay said during the interview. “There are new ways to do things. New ways to shoot, new ways to monetize, new ways to distribute, new audiences to find, new ways to communicate with them that don’t require some old man telling you ‘you can do it.’ So now that’s the case, and we know it’s the case, we need to begin.”

The UCLA alum went on to explain why she’s proud to be defined as a “black woman filmmaker,” in spite of other filmmakers who may be ashamed of the title.

“I know and I’ve heard of people saying, ‘I don’t want to be defined as a woman filmmaker’ or ‘I don’t want to be defined as a black filmmaker,’ all good with me, but I want to be defined as a ‘black woman filmmaker,’ because that’s the lens through which I’m working,” she said.

“That is my gaze. I’m proud of it. I don’t feel like it’s any less or limiting. I’m a black woman filmmaker and my films are just as valid as the white man filmmaker and whoever else,” she added.

Check out more of Ava DuVernay’s MAKERS interview in the clip above and here.

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