Why Aren't The Networks Picking Up Any Pilots Created By Women?

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"While there are a fair amount of pilots about women," writes Melissa Silverstein of WomenandHollywood.com, "the story here is the lack of women who are writing and creating the shows." Silverstein has the stats, and they aren't encouraging:

According to Silverstein, only "3 out of 33 comedy scripts that went to pilot were written by women. That is 9%," while only "6 out of 36 drama scripts went to pilot were written by women. That is 16%." A cursory glance at the pilots the female-penned pilots networks did pick up shows several male-female writing teams, as well as high-profile names we've seen before: Amy Sherman-Palladino of Gilmore Girls, Winnie Holzman of My So-Called Life, Cindy Chupack of Sex and the City, and Shana Goldberg-Meehan of Friends, for example. Silverstein notes that NBC didn't pick up any female-penned scripts, nor did Lifetime. LIFETIME! Television for motherfucking women! In the words of Angelina from Jersey Shore: "Um, hello?!?"


Over at Nikki Finke's Deadline Hollywood, the 2010 pilot season is being called "the worst year in a decade" for female writers, and one source tells Finke that "'Created By' is a credit where the money and power is — and women are being denied it." But why? Several commenters on Finke's site, naturally, have decided it's because the female-created pilots were shitty to begin with, though with the number of pilot pickups dwindling, and some networks not picking up ANY shows created by women, it's hard not to recall the words of Times critic Manohla Dargis: "This business is really about clubby relationships. If you buy Variety or go online and look at the deals, you see one guy after another smiling in a baseball cap. It's all guys making deals with other guys."

Worst Network Pilot Season For Women? [Deadline Hollywood]
What Is This, 1950? Women Are Missing As TV Creators [WomenAndHollywood]

Earlier: "Fuck Them": Times Critic On Hollywood, Women & Why Romantic Comedies Suck



I don't know the stats, but it seems like Showtime is looking like the most female friendly network right now in terms of writers and creators. Weeds, United States of Tara, and Nurse Jackie are all created by women I believe, and they all have quite a few women on their writing staffs.

I'm a genre fiction person so most new fall seasons don't do a lot for me, and I've gotten used to the shows I like not always doing well...like Pushing Daisies and Dollhouse. It's sad to me that we still don't seem to be making much progress in this area...