Jill Soloway recently appeared at L.A.’s Cinefamily theater to promote her website, Wifey.tv, and for a collaboration with all-women filmmaking collective Film Fatales. In 2013, Soloway launched the digital platform with co-founder Rebecca Odes to give women more meaningful content to watch online. Before a presentation of six short films, Soloway gave an inspiring speech that was also a call-to-action for women filmmakers.

The Transparent creator talked about the current “state of emergency when it comes to the female voice” and the male gaze being a “privilege perpetuator,” reports Indiewire.

In the Roger Ebert documentary [“Life Itself”], he talks about films being an empathy machine, so whoever the protagonist is, they’re going to have empathy and when men are making movies about men, they’re creating more empathy for the male gaze. So the male gaze, because the men are subjects, necessarily divides us, divides women into either/or —the madonna or the whore, the slut or the good girl or the many, many ways in which women are divided to be seen as objects when the male character is the subject. That divide is kind of a wound that’s really harming our entire planet right now.

Soloway asked for filmmakers to be persistent when it came to seeking out their voice.

When you pick up the camera and share your voice, it heals the world. It’s not funny anymore what’s going on with us. It’s immoral, the way that we are kept from our voices. It’s not just a matter of our numbers. There is a real all-out attack on us having subjectivity, so I just beg everybody to be relentless in their pursuit of their voice.

She then spoke openly of her own fears and warned the audience to check themselves if they encounter the same, and to persevere.

I just want to make sure you know I’m always plagued by insecurities. The insecurities are always going to be there. Notice them when you’re there writing, when you’re trying to get your thing out there, when you’re setting up your night where you’re showing your films. It’s always going to be there. The world, the matriarchal revolution, is dependent on female voices and speaking out loud. Please keep making things.

The second season of Transparent will be out later this year. It has already been renewed for a third season.


Contact the author at marie.lodi@jezebel.com.