This week, the British Film Institute released statistics revealing that a mere 14 feature films were directed by women in the UK last year, compared to 164 by men. Meanwhile, of the 16 gala premieres just announced by this year’s Toronto film festival, none have female directors.
The prejudices faced by women filmmakers - half of all film school graduates but only 5% of working Hollywood directors - have been well-documented. Those who do make it talk often of the depressing struggle they faced to get there, far longer on average than their male counterparts. It is equally common to hear of a female director whose difficulties in getting financed or produced stemmed from the personal subject matter of their work.