January 8, 2008

January 8, 2008

Hollywood Doesn't Want Women Directors (duh)
I let this piece pass when I first read it because it was written on Tom Long's Detroit News blog before the holidays, but now I'm going to comment. (I am guessing this piece got picked up because there are so few stories on women, especially women directors)

When it comes to a woman's touch, Hollywood apparently doesn't want it behind the camera.
But in 2007, with five of the most critically lauded movies of the year written by women, and three of those writers also directing their films, there has been at least a slight indication that that may be changing.
It's about time. During the past decade, out of 50 Oscar nominations for best director, only one has gone to a woman: Sofia Coppola for 2003's "Lost in Translation."
During the same period, out of 100 nominations for adapted or original screenplay Oscars, only four have gone to women writing on their own: Coppola for "Translation"; Nia Vardalos for "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" in 2002; Susannah Grant for "Erin Brockovich" in 2000; and Elaine May for "Primary Colors" in 1998.
I want to thank Tom for bringing up issues that women have been talking about for so long. Seems when a guy does it, it gets more play.

But.. DOES FIVE FILMS INDICATE CHANGE? According to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences there are 306 films eligible for an Oscar. Five is pathetic. I am tired of all these stories that try to paint a happy face on despair. The lack of women writers, directors and stars is despair worthy.
Female Directors Progressed in 2007 (SF Chronicle)

Susie Bright Weighs in on Hollywood's rash of pregnancies
I'm perplexed by the newest baby-happy trend in movies with female leads.
I can't recall a single friend who PLANNED to have a baby, who ever had as great a gestation period as these heroines.
But the overall effect was disquieting. The movies are farces, masquerading as romantic comedies. In a couple cases, it alarmed me that they couldn't utter the word "abortion" aloud, no matter how many naked boobs, swear words, or bong jokes were included.
She manages to talk about her own abortions to give some context which has been missing in all of these discussions.
The Reality Behind Hollywood Pregnancies (Alternet)

Karyn Kusama (Girlfight) is in negotiations to direct Jennifer's Body the next script from Diablo Cody (Juno).
Film will star Megan Fox (Transformers). If she signs on it would be another female trifecta film- director, writer and star. Keep em coming.
Kusama May Pick up Body (Hollywood Reporter)

Pissed off Doc Community to Launch Own Awards
Documentary filmmakers and programmers are fighting back against the Oscar by creating their own doc awards which will be given out March 18th at the IFC Center in NY. Community vets like Phoebe Brush (Full Frame), Cara Mertes (Sundance), Rachel Rosen (Los Angeles), Sky Sitney (SilverDocs), and Brit Withey (Denver) are on the committee.

The 15 films vying for honors include:
"Billy the Kid," directed by Jennifer Venditti
"Deep Water," directed by Louise Osmond and Jerry Rothwell
"The Devil Came on Horseback," directed by Ricki Stern and Anne Sundberg
"Manufactured Landscapes," directed by Jennifer Baichwal
"The Monastery - Mr. Vig and the Nun," directed by Pernille Rose Gronkj√ɦr
"The Unforeseen," directed by Laura Dunn

Biopic of Benazir Bhutto Already in the Work (Variety)

Sundance jurors include a bunch of women. Mary Harron, Marcia Gay Harden and Sandra Oh have been selected as members of the dramatic competition. The documentary competition jury includes Heidi Ewing, Annie Sundberg and IFP exec director Michelle Byrd.
Lucrecia Martel and Jan Schuette are part of the world dramatic competition jury. On the World docu competition jury is Leena Pasanen, and Ilda Santiago and Melonie Diaz will sit on the short-film jury (Variety)

AfterEllen visits the L Word set
Interview with Leisha Hailey and Kate Moennig (AfterEllen)

Paula Wagner, Tom Cruise's partner in UA (who recently signed a side agreement with the Writer's Guild incuring the wrath of the AMPTP, will be honored with the President's Award from the Costume Designers Guild. (I didn't even know they gave out awards) Ceremony will be hosted by Anjelica Huston on Feb. 19. (Variety)

Joanna Gleason will star off-Broadway in Willy Holtzman's play "Something You Did to be directed by Carolyn Cantor. Performances start in March. (Variety)