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Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker Carol Dysinger talks women-supported communities and the making of her career

Since filmmaker Carol Dysinger found out that her documentary short was nominated for an Oscar last week, she’s been flown all over the country for press and screenings. For her short, “Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl),” Dysinger spent time with Skateistan School House and Skate Park. Here, in Kabul, Afghanistan, […]

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‘Troop Zero’ a joyful celebration of originality 

From directors Bert and Bertie and screenwriter Lucy Alibar comes the sweet and smart comedy Troop Zero, streaming on Amazon Prime Video January 17. This delightful feature not only celebrates originality as a theme for its memorable characters, but also sends a message to the audience about the value of completely original stories – especially […]

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Why are the Oscars so male-centric?

The strive for equal recognition in the film industry continues in the two years following the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements. With the overwhelming lack of nominations for female writers and directors at the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association gives a bleak preview for the upcoming awards season cycle. Although the […]

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Annenberg Inclusion Initiative keeps watchful eye on equality in entertainment industry

The number of top-grossing films directed by women reached record levels in 2019, making the percentage of female film directors (in the last 13 years) … 4.8 percent. According to a January 2020 report from the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, 10.6 percent of film directors in 2019 were women – a six percent increase from […]

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Women write, direct best movies of the decade

The term “best” is all relative. What might be right for you may not be right for some (it’s right there in the Diff’rent Strokes theme song, guys). But even in the post #MeToo era, when the conversation about equality is becoming increasingly important, women are continuously being shut out of awards season – most […]

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‘Black Christmas’ doesn’t bother with subtlety

Black Christmas puts us into the world of the most stereotypical college imaginable, with the plucky protagonist Riley having to fight a cabal of patriarchal frat boys to save herself and her sisters. Thinking back to my own college experience, I don’t exactly find the same kind of Greek-centric world in my memories of NYU, […]

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The Best Women-Directed Films of 2019

Kaitlyn Dever stars as Amy and Beanie Feldstein as Molly in Olivia Wilde’s directorial debut, Booksmart, an Annapurna Pictures release.

There were so many films released during the past year but the following are among the best women-directed films of 2019. Booksmart If there’s one film that I believe will still be talked about in a decade, it’s Booksmart. This is a film that re-defines what female friendship means for a new generation. Less than […]

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Jean Seberg a prominent force in cinema, history

Who was Jean Seberg? Jean Seberg was a prominent actress from 1957 to her untimely death in 1979 at the young age of 40. Her career and personal life were tumultuous, and many of her films were frankly major flops. You may remember her from Saint Joan, Otto Preminger’s rendition of Joan of Arc. Seberg […]

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Satisfying ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ is all heart

J.J. Abrams seems to have a heart bigger than his film budgets. From his earliest creations in television, with Keri Russell-led Felicity and groundbreaking phenomenon Lost, Abrams seems to understand the importance of human connection. But if you thought Felicity was about Team Ben or Team Noel or if Lost was about a polar bear, […]

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1917, Queen & Slim honored by National Board of Review 

The National Board of Review announced its picks for best movies of 2019 Dec. 3, the first of many organizations who will roll out their awards season winners throughout the month of December.  Very few awards went to female filmmakers, the most notable being Melina Matsoukas winning Best Directorial Debut for Queen & Slim, her […]

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Women dominate Thanksgiving box office

It’s a beautiful day at the box office for women in film. Three of the five movies dominating late-November ticket sales are directed by women.  Frozen 2 won Thanksgiving weekend, earning more than $85 million domestically. The film directed by Jennifer Lee has already broken box office records, opening at #1 in all markets November […]

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Rebecca Sugar’s ‘Steven Universe: The Movie’ a retrospective on emotionally intelligent series

March, 2015. I’m home for spring break from NYU, feeling more alone and confused than even a Millennial usually does. My first two or so years of college have felt like a wash, specifically an acidic wash of vodka and vomit, and I’ve reached the point of looking ahead into my post-college years and have […]

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‘The Kingmaker,’ ‘My Home India’ remind us of the legacy we leave

Maybe this is something writers think about more than other people, but I spend a lot of time considering what impact I’m making on the world, and how I will be remembered when I’m gone. If I didn’t think my actions impacted others, I’d be living my life much differently than I do now–I’d probably […]

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Annabelle Attansio tells female-centric coming-of-age story ‘Mickey and the Bear’

Known to the public as an actress, Annabelle Attansio has been making short films for years before becoming one to watch feature debut, Mickey and the Bear. Debuting at South by Southwest, the film stars Camila Morrone and James Badge Dale as Mickey and Hank, a daughter-father team in Montana. But for some time Mickey […]

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Lily Zepeda doc ‘Mr. Toilet’ raises awareness for proper sanitation

“Mr. Toilet: The World’s #2 Man”—the title itself is enough to catch your attention, but there’s so much more than meets the eye in this loaded documentary about one man’s endeavor to educate and find ways of providing safe, clean environments in which to do your daily duties.  Documentary filmmaker Lily Zepeda, over the course […]

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Female Eye Film Festival features 75 films directed by women

The 17th Annual Female Eye Festival (FeFF) began Nov. 7, featuring more than 75 films directed by women. Running through Nov. 10 at the ScotiaBank Theatre in Toronto, the festival is a proud showcase for “so many talented women, most of whom are writers, directors and producers,” according to FeFF Founder and Executive Director Leslie […]

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Alma Har’el talks ‘overwhelming’ response to ‘Honey Boy,’ LaBeouf’s career-best performance

Alma Har’el recently spoke to FF2 Media over the phone about Honey Boy. Amazon Studios will release the film for limited theatrical release starting on November 8. Honey Boy is a very personal and cathartic film for Shia LaBeouf.  What drew you to take on the project? Alma Har’el: What drew me really is that […]

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Less than one percent of movies on Disney+ are directed by women

The wonderful world of Disney isn’t so wonderful for female directors. Streaming service Disney+ will launch Nov. 12. Users can stream hundreds of Disney titles dating back to 1940, including new original content, for $6.99 per month or $69.99 per year.  Of the more than 500 films that will be featured on Disney+, only 36 […]

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Minhal Baig tells story of “hyphenate” teenager with Pakistani-American ‘Hala’

The coming-of-age story, “Hala,” written and directed by Chicago-born Minhal Baig, looks at teenage life through a “hyphenate’s” lens; a Pakistani-American.  Starring Geraldine Viswanathan (“Blockers”), a teen navigates life in two worlds; home and school, attempting to balance both as she sees her parents for who they are and attempts to grow and find her […]

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‘Varda’ tribute leads women directors at 2019 NY Film Festival

For 57 years, New York Film Festival at Lincoln Center has been U.S. flagship of “auteur” cinema.  Writer/directors who dominate their films were presumed male – with the exception of Belgian-born Agnès Varda.  Every decade, the Festival selected a film by her. She died March 29 at age 90. In tribute, the September 27 – […]

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Apple TV+ features diverse work from women

Apple TV+ launches Nov. 1, featuring a diverse lineup of content from female directors. The first all-original video subscription service will be available on the Apple TV app in more than 100 countries at the price of $4.99 per month.  “With Apple TV+, we are presenting all-original stories from the best, brightest and most creative […]

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‘Little Women’ generating Oscar buzz for Gerwig, Ronan

Director and screenwriter Greta Gerwig is already generating Oscar buzz for her new take on Louisa May Alcott’s timeless novel, Little Women, starring Saoirse Ronan as feisty writer Jo March along with a stellar supporting cast: Florence Pugh, Timothee Chalamet, Laura Dern, Meryl Streep, Emma Watson and Eliza Scanlen. Although the film opens on Christmas […]

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‘Digitalkarma’ and ‘Hala’ tell women’s stories at Chicago International Film Festival

The 55th annual Chicago International Film Festival runs through October 27 at the AMC River East theater. Of the 132 features, 43 are directed by women. In an article I wrote on last year’s CIFF, there were 38 female directors. The previous article showed that there were 36 films directed by women. Out of 17 […]

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Women directors come of age at Chicago International Film Festival

The 55th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) kicks off this weekend, featuring more than 40 films directed by women during its 11-day lineup.  The festival has a history of striving toward gender equality, featuring more than 30 films directed by women in 2017 and 2018. Favorite films in previous years have included Greta Gerwig’s Lady […]

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27 countries submit films by women for ‘Best International Film’ Oscar consideration

Out of a record-breaking 93 countries that have submitted entries to be considered for best international film nominations at the Academy Awards, 27 films are directed by women (or 29 percent total).  Previously known as the “Best Foreign Language Film” that the Academy dubbed outdated, the “Best International Film” submissions were announced Monday, including first-time […]

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Ebert Symposium Keynote Speaker Dr. Stacy Smith predicts major increase of female filmmakers for 2020

The Second Annual Chaz and Roger Ebert Symposium took place on Friday, Sept. 27, where panelists discussed important issues and solutions for diversity in film, including Keynote Speaker Dr. Stacy Smith who gave a presentation on extensive film analysis research. Founder & Director of the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative (AII), Dr. Smith’s  research showed that, […]

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Female filmmakers making overall ‘Best’ lists

The winners of the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) have been announced and as the dust is now settled, we can sift through the hype and clearly see the outcome at this year’s fest.  Yes, the stars were shining bright along the red carpet and there’s certainly a bit of Oscar buzz already, but […]

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Columbia College Chicago premieres ‘Ask for Jane’

Columbia College Chicago’s Film Row Cinema and the Chicago Women’s History Center showcased the premiere of Ask For Jane on Saturday, September 28, in honor of International Safe Abortion Day. Writer/director Rachel Carey’s 2018 film, based on a true story, takes place in Chicago in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s when abortion is illegal […]

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Second annual Chaz & Roger Ebert Symposium celebrates diversity 

The Second Annual Chaz & Roger Ebert Symposium will take place this Friday, Sept. 27 at the iHotel and Conference Center in Champaign. The event is free and open to the public and everyone is encouraged to attend. This year’s symposium is titled “Creating an Inclusive Media and Cinema Ecosystem” and will feature speakers from […]

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Architecture & Design Film Festival features international female filmmakers

The Architecture & Design Film Festival will run Oct. 16-20 at Cinépolis Chelsea in New York City. The 11th year of the nation’s largest film festival devoted to architecture and design will feature eight films directed by women. With 19 films screening, about 42 percent of the lineup is from female filmmakers.  Alysa Nahmias’ The […]

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