Here’s a hell of a note: Two Hollywood studios—Fox, with the exception of Fox Searchlight, and Paramount—don’t currently have a single film directed by a woman scheduled for release through 2018.
That’s according to the calculations of the Wrap, the complete breakdown of which you can see at the link. They wrote:
A tally by TheWrap found 22 consecutive films from Fox — not counting Fox Searchlight, the studio’s art-house division — and 25 consecutive releases from Paramount had only male directors attached. So far, that covers all movies scheduled to hit theaters this year, next year and 2018 too.
Representatives for Fox declined to comment; Paramount did not respond to repeated requests from TheWrap. Neither studio disputed the statistics.
The Wrap excluded the artsy Fox Searchlight, which is part of Fox, from its count. Fox Searchlight does more acquisitions, which means less of a chance to shape the project and its team; they also have women-helmed projects Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie and Battle of the Sexes coming soon and in production, respectively. It won’t be surprising to hear that women have a tougher time landing the big-budget blockbusters, too:
With big-budget, action-packed studio tentpoles that cater to the tastes of teenage boys, women can’t get access to the jobs men get. “They can’t get on the studio track,” [founder and publisher of Women and Hollywood Melissa] Silverstein added. “The studios have been awakened and schooled on their unconscious bias. No longer is it acceptable to say that women are not competent, or there are not enough women, or that they don’t know any women. This consistent and persistent view of women directors is plain and simple discrimination.”
The Wrap notes that Fox 2000 is working on Love Letters to the Dead with a female director attached, and 20th Century Fox plans to get a woman for Lumberjanes, but both projects are still in development, which means they’re not a sure thing. Other studios are doing better, but it’s not exactly a bed of roses out there.
Hollywood is currently in the middle of a loud and insistent push for gender diversity, and this doesn’t necessarily mean those advocates aren’t making progress. The Wrap notes, “After all, the films hitting theaters this year and next were put into development pipelines many years ago, before the outcry of gender-bias reached deafening levels.” But it would’ve been nice if they could have gotten their houses in order decades ago—it’s not like women haven’t been pushing for their place at the table for generations at this point.