Women @ TIFF 2021 – Alexandra Heller-Nicholas reports

The 2021 Toronto International Film Festival program includes an impressive number of women-helmed films. coinciding with the festival’s Share Her Journey campaign which began in 2017 Originally conceived as a five-year program to focus on gender parity and amplify the role of women in the screen industries, 2021 marks its final year, and the films in this year’s program demonstrate that while the battle is certainly not over – for TIFF, for film festivals, or for the screen industries more broadly – if you make an effort to consciously elevate women in these fields, the results can be extraordinary.

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One Thing Movie Studios Can Do to Support Diversity in Media Criticism – Betsy Bozdech comments

If studios and filmmakers truly believe in fostering diversity — behind the scenes, on camera, and in the dark rooms where writers who care passionately about film and media engage with their work — then it’s time to help make access to those films as equitable as possible. And that means continuing to make screeners available regularly so that reviewers everywhere, from every demographic, have the chance to make their perspectives heard. Equitable access to media screeners will give more voice to reviewers everywhere.

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SPOTLIGHT February 2021: Carey Mulligan, Actress and Character Champion

Carey Mulligan consistently and deliberately plays women who defy expectations. She likes the unpredictable story, pushing back against characters who look, move, or speak the way that female characters often have. Now after challenging herself as an artist and audiences, she’s asked critics to raise the bar as well, going beyond physicality when examining a film and what makes it work. As creatives strive to see the full spectrum of women represented onscreen, being honest yet constructive in our assessments – just as Mulligan is honest in her performances – is vital to moving forward.

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WEEK IN WOMEN: Sundance Film Festival Hits 50-50 – Brandy McDonnell reports

The 2021 Sundance slate includes 71 feature-length films, representing 29 countries and 38 first-time feature filmmakers. The films were selected from 14,092 submissions, including 3,500 feature-length films. Of the feature film submissions, 1,377 were from the U.S. and 2,132 were international. 50% of the 10 directors in this year’s U.S. Dramatic Competition identify as women, while 40% identify as BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color). In addition, 64% of the 11 directors in this year’s U.S. Documentary Competition identify as women, while 73% identify as BIPOC and 9% as LGBTQ+.

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Midnight Madness Gender Parity at TIFF 2020 – Alexandra Heller-Nicholas reports

The 2020 Midnight Madness program is notable for reaching parity through an emphasis on both quantity and quality, making claims of tokenism effectively impossible. While the ethical debates around programming and equity in terms of gender and other points of difference are complex, to achieve gender parity in a program of top shelf films where 50% of the filmmakers are women and 50% are people of color is no small deal.

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Women’s Filmmaking Highlights at TIFF 2020 – Alexandra Heller-Nicholas reports

Big screen or small screen, on-site or watching streaming from home, while many elements of TIFF 2020 will be a new experience, the seemingly conscious emphasis on women’s filmmaking from around the world thankfully remains intact. Unlike a number of other high-profile festivals that have yet to adequately read the room, TIFF again avoids the mistake of assuming women in front of the camera will make up for not programming films where they prominently feature behind it in key creative roles.

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Michelle O’Reilly talks Arcana Studios, Animation and Graphic Novels – Marina Antunes interviews

Being a woman in two under-represented industries, comics and animation, is no easy feat, but Michelle O;Reilly takes it all in stride, and she takes full advantage of whatever opportunities she can to close the gender gap. “We try really hard, especially within the studio, to give women opportunities in any way we can.”

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Sundance 2020 Curtain Raiser – Leslie Combemale reports

A SUNDANCE PRIMER & SUNDANCE 2020: Why Sundance is so female-friendly, and looking Ahead at events and Films at one of the most female filmmaker supportive film festivals of the year. In 2020, Sundance continues their commitment to parity for women in film and inclusion of filmmakers and creators from all perspectives.

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WEEK IN WOMEN: Sundance FF close to 50/50 in 2020 – Brandy McDonnell reports

When the 2020 Sundance Film Festival kicks off later this month in and around Park City, Utah, it will be close to its goal of gender parity – significantly closer than most of the other major film fests. This year’s lineup includes 118 full-length feature films, representing 27 countries and 44 first-time feature filmmakers. Of the 65 directors in the four competition categories – which total 56 films – 46 percent are women, 38 percent are people of color and 12 percent are LGBTQ+

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