Guide Fantastic Female Filmmakers: 1 (The Womens Hall of Fame Series)

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Her work focuses on economic justice, educational equity, ending gender-based violence, and women in the criminal justice system. Along with Melissa Goodman of the Aclu of Southern CA, she urged the Eeoc to investigate the low number of women hired by studios to be directors for film and television. Patty Jenkins is a writer and director best known for directing Warner Bros. Jenkins garnered a number of awards and nominations, including winning Best First Feature at the Independent Spirit Awards. In , Jenkins broke the record for biggest grossing live-action film directed by a woman, domestic and worldwide, with Wonder Woman.

The success of her documentary Women Without Shadows influenced a new wave of Saudi filmmakers and made the issue of opening cinemas in the Kingdom front-page news. At home , her work is both praised and vilified for encouraging discussion on taboo issues and for penetrating the wall of silence surrounding the sequestered lives of Saudi women.

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The film received wide critical acclaim after its premiere at the Venice Film Festival and established al-Mansour as an important talent emerging from the Arab World. She recently published a novelization of the film titled The Green Bicycle for Penguin publishing group. Meyerhoff is also the founder of Film Fatales, a female filmmaker organization based in New York with dozens of local chapters around the world. Film Fatales is a global community of women feature film and television directors who meet regularly to mentor each other, share resources, collaborate on projects, and build a supportive environment in which to get their films made and seen.

Angela Robinson Angela Robinson is a filmmaker who explores and exposes the breadth and complexity of humanity in an extensive body of work across both film and television. Filtering her storytelling through the multi-faceted prism of identity, Robinson uses the power of her unique voice to intelligently and empathetically bring compelling, intersectional stories — specifically those of women, people of color, and Lgbtq individuals — to the mainstream in a way that is entertaining, emotional, and thought-provoking.

Mdsc research focuses on inclusion in film, television, and digital media and all facets of the music industry. Smith has written over journal articles, book chapters, and reports on media content patterns and effects. Smith speaks routinely on issues of inequality. Women and Hollywood Announces 10th Anniversary Trailblazer Award Winners was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. Meira Blaustein Guest Post by Meira Blaustein When I co-founded the Woodstock Film Festival 18 years ago I had no sense of how hard the work would be, and how immense the positive influence on so many people, near and far, it would have.

Eighteen years after the festival first began as a fiercely independent, artistically driven event, I can look around and see the thousands of lives that it has affected and helped: Seeing countless stories like this makes the hard work and dedication worthwhile. As a woman working in a male-dominated industry, I recognize that there is much work left to do. This year we are showing 54 feature films, and 19 are directed by women, which puts us at a higher percentage than most festivals.

Moreover, we have made a conscious effort in our programming to pay attention to issues affecting women, as well as films featuring outstanding female actors. The more that festivals like ours offer opportunities to showcase and celebrate the outstanding works by women filmmakers, the higher the chances that those keepers of the gate in the financing and distribution universe will open their purse and greenlight female-directed projects.

The 18th annual Woodstock Film Festival runs from October 11— Meira Blaustein is an arts entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience developing film organizations, entertainment, arts, and media events in the U. Wff was launched in and has become one of the most respected and influential regional film festivals in the USA. Blaustein has been running it ever since its inception. The festival developed into what is now the Baja International Film Festival. A filmmaker by training, Blaustein directed, produced, and consulted on numerous feature films in various stages, from development to marketing.

The fest also will offer free workshops and networking sessions. The actor had scored in dozens of low-budget projects and directed a short film a few years earlier, but he had reason to believe nobody else was going to back his feature-length debut. After short stint as a soubrette in the farce comedy "Zig-Zag" for a Chicago-based touring company, Weber resigned as it "proved too superficial for her altruistic aims".

The troupe's leading man and manager was Wendell Phillips Smalley — , a grandson of Oliver Wendell Holmes , and the elder son of New York Tribune war and foreign correspondent George Washburn Smalley — [54] [55] and Phoebe Garnaut Phillips — , [56] [57] the adopted daughter of abolitionist Wendell Phillips. Smalley, who had attended Balliol College, Oxford and was a graduate of Harvard University , had been a lawyer in New York for seven years, and a stage actor who made his professional stage debut in August in Manhattan.

After initially touring separately from her husband, and then accompanying him on his tours, about Weber left her career in the theater and became a homemaker in New York. At the end of the theatrical season, Smalley joined Weber at Gaumont. In , Weber and Smalley decided to pursue a career in the infant motion picture industry.

For the next five years, they worked and were credited as The Smalleys but where typically Weber received sole writing credit on dozens of shorts and features for small production companies like Gaumont, the New York Motion Picture Co. Weber took two years off her birth date when she signed her first movie contract.

Weber and Smalley had a daughter, Phoebe, named after Smalley's mother, who was born on October 29, , but died in infancy. Rex continued as a subsidiary of Universal, with Weber and Smalley running it, [29] making one two-reel film each week, [52] until they left Rex in September Weber is credited with pioneering the use of the split screen technique to show simultaneous action in this film, [11] but the "oft-mentioned triptych shots had already been used in the Danish "The White Slave Trade" films Den hvide slavehandel , also for telephone conversations.

In late , Weber and Smalley made The Jew's Christmas , a three-reel silent film that dramatizes the conflict between traditional Jewish values and American customs and values, [87] illustrating the challenges of cultural assimilation , especially the generational conflict over interfaith marriage and the second generation's abandonment of the faith and customs of their ancestors.


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In , a year in which she directed 27 movies, Weber became "one of the first directors to come to the attention of the censors". A "prominent rabbi in Chicago strongly objected on the grounds that the play 'more than any other book, more than any other influence in the history of the world, is responsible for the world-wide prejudice against the Jews'", [] but the film was praised at the time as "a supreme adaptation of Shakespeare".

One film that illustrates the paradoxical nature of Weber's role and films was her film The Spider and Her Web , where she advocates both modesty and maternalism.

In this film, Weber plays "The Spider", a vamp living the "ultra-modern high life" who seduces and ruins intellectual men until frightened into adopting an orphan baby, which results in the salvation of the lead character through motherhood. In , Bertha Smith estimated Weber's audience at five to six million a week. Griffith and Cecil B. In a interview Weber declared: I find at once an outlet for my emotions and my ideals.

I can preach to my heart's content, and with the opportunity to write the play, act the leading role, and direct the entire production, if my message fails to reach someone, I can blame only myself. The need for a strong, loving and nurturing home was clearly promoted as well and if there was a single maxim that underlay each film it was that selfishness and egocentricity erode the individual and community". Johns , [] and, in at least two of her films, Jewel and its remake, A Chapter in Her Life , Christian Science plays a prominent role. In , Weber made her first major feature, [] a controversial version of Hypocrites , a four-reel allegorical drama shot at Universal City [] which she wrote, directed and produced, addressing social themes and moral lessons considered daring for the time.

Her husband, John Edwards, an invalid, died the same year she did Hypocrites was released finally by Bosworth on January 15, , [] and premiered at Manhattan's prestigious Longacre Theatre , [] and was "celebrated as a cultural, artistic, and moral landmark for the film industry", [] and "praised for its use of multiple exposures and complex film editing". In April , Weber and Smalley left Bosworth when the founder left the company due to ill health. I would be sure that she would bring it back.

In , Weber explained her philosophy of directing films: He or she in this case alone knows the effects he wants to produce, and he alone should have authority in the arrangement, cutting, titling or anything else that may seem necessary to do to the finished product.

What other artist has his work interfered with by someone else?

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We ought to realize that the work of a picture director, worthy of a name, is creative". In February , Weber and Smalley were transferred to Universal's Bluebird Photoplays brand, where they made a dozen features, [] including The Dumb Girl of Portici also known as Pavlowa , adapted by Weber from Daniel Auber 's opera La muette de Portici , [] Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova 's only screen appearance, [] which was directed to Pavlova's satisfaction by Weber. Hoping to "become the editorial page of the studio", [] and to "provoke a middle-class sense of responsibility for those less fortunate than themselves, and to stimulate moral reforms", [] Weber specialized in making films that stressed both high quality and moral rectitude, including films of the "burning social and moral issues of the day", [] among them such controversial themes as abortion, eugenics , and birth control in Where Are My Children?

John Doe ; [] and alcoholism and opium addiction in Hop, the Devil's Brew , which were all successful at the box office, [] but, while embraced by reformers in the film industry, "drew the ire of the conservatives". In Where Are My Children? The Illborn , which was released on April 16, , Weber advocates social purity, birth control , and eugenics to prevent the "deterioration of the race" and the "proliferation of the lower classes", and makes "an indirect case for birth control or perhaps even for legalized, and safe, abortions". It also makes use of several trick photography scenes, with an emphasis on multiple exposures to convey information or emotions visually.

As a recurring motif , every time a character becomes pregnant, a child's face is double exposed over their shoulder. In March , the National Board of Review expressed disapproval of the film for showings to mixed audiences, but later approved it for adult showings. For example, Kevin Brownlow indicates that this film attracted 30, in Preston, Lancashire , 40, in Bradford, Yorkshire , and , in two weeks in Sydney. Shoes , a "sociological" film released in June that Weber directed for the Bluebird Photoplays , was based on the novel A New Conscience and an Ancient Evil by noted social reformer Jane Addams and depicts the struggles of working class women for consumer goods and upward mobility and their dubious sexual activities, including prostitution.

A scene from the restored "Shoes" showing architect John B. Parkinson 's design for Pershing Square in Downtown Los Angeles has been used by the grassroots Pershing Square Restoration Society in promoting their campaign to restore the historic park. After another significant censorship battle, and a vigorous publicity campaign by Universal, on May 13, , Universal released The Hand That Rocks the Cradle , "one of the most forceful films ever made in support of legalizing birth control", a follow-up to the previous year's top money-maker for Universal, Where Are My Children?

Directed by Weber and Smalley based on their original script, it starred Smalley and Weber, in her last screen appearance, as a doctor's wife arrested and imprisoned for illegally disseminating family planning information. The film was released only weeks after Sanger's own film, Birth Control , was banned under a ruling of the United States Supreme Court that films "did not constitute free speech", [] and the ruling of the New York Court of Appeals that a film on family planning may be censored "in the interest of morality, decency, and public safety and welfare". Sensitive to the opinions of local communities, and hoping to avoid powerful censorship boards in the northeast and midwest, The Hand That Rocks the Cradle was distributed primarily in the southern and western regions of the United States, with the result that it did not attain the record-breaking attendance set by Where Are My Children?

While The Hand That Rocks the Cradle is now lost, the surviving script and accompanying marketing materials make it clear that Weber mounted an unstinting argument in favor of "voluntary motherhood".

National Women's Hall of Fame 2015 Induction Ceremony

In June Weber became the first American female director to establish and run her own movie studio [15] when she formed her own production company , Lois Weber Productions, [] with the financial assistance of Universal. According to film historian Shelley Stamp, while Weber and Smalley were often co-credited as directors, it was "the wife who clearly had the artistic vision to drive the business partnership forward". Weber consciously resisted the industry's movement toward assembly line-style studio film making.

Weber's independence allowed her to shoot her films in sequence, as she preferred rather than out of order to suit production schedules. Routt indicates that "Lois Weber Productions were a good investment, cost-effective. The company made movies cheaply: Its somewhat sensational topics and titles guaranteed at least a modest box office return, and at times may have done much better than that. Karen Ward Mahar [ who? While Weber was clearly a New Woman by virtue of her career, she was also publicly identified as the wife and collaborator of her first husband.

Shelley Stamp argues that Weber's "image was instrumental in defining both her particular place in film-making practices, and women's roles within early Hollywood generally", and that her "wifely, bourgeois persona, relatively conservative and staid, mirrored the film industry's idealized conception of its new customers: In , Weber was the only woman granted membership in the Motion Picture Directors Association , and from Weber was active in supporting the newly established Hollywood Studio Club , a residence for struggling would-be starlets.

Hart , Cecil B. DeMille , and William Desmond Taylor. The Association raised funds for the construction of a thousand-bed hospital. However, she was replaced eventually by John G. Despite continuing to work at Universal, and renting out her studio to other independent producers, including Marshall Neilan , Weber found it difficult to pay the bills and to find the capital to finance her own productions. You are authorized to get these without stint or limit. Spare nothing, neither expense, time, or effort. Results only are what I'm after. A Midnight Romance and Mary Regan , both released in to mixed reviews.

Ivar Avenue, Hollywood, [] [] later the home of Preston Sturges in the s. In October , Weber purchased the studio facilities at Santa Monica Boulevard in Los Angeles, near Sunset Boulevard, which she had been leasing for the previous three years. By February , Weber was at the zenith of her career, [] and regarded "as fearless in the production of her pictures as she once was in her struggle for a living, and her indubitable position is that of one of the best directors of the screen", [40] One newspaper wrote, "Lois Weber is not only the foremost woman director-she's the whole works", and attributed her success to having "a feminine touch lacking in most man-made films".

Following "the cinematic rumination on modern marriage begun by Cecil B. DeMille ", [] and like other post-war filmmakers, Weber turned her attention toward marriage and domestic life to honor her deal with Famous Players-Lasky with such melodramas as To Please One Woman , What's Worth While? By this time her "morally upright films bored modern audiences", her crusading was unwanted, and her views were considered "quaint". After an advance screening in February , Paramount executives decided not to distribute the fourth film in their arrangement with Weber, What Do Men Want?

After making 13 films, [] by April , Lois Weber Productions collapsed, and Weber was forced to release all her contracted staff, with the exception of two novice actors. After reading the articles "Impoverished College Teaching" and "Boycotting the Ministry" in the April 30, issue of Literary Digest about the underpayment of educators and clergy, Weber, with scenarist Marion Orth , crafted a melodramatic narrative to bring the issue to life in The Blot. Weber used the same method of direction, too, filming in continuity.

Lists with This Book. Oct 29, Terry rated it really liked it Shelves: This is a fascinating look at the lives of ten female filmmakers. I loved that it spanned the globe and helped you see that there is more to movies than what Hollywood portrays. See our full review at The Reading Tub. View all 6 comments.

Aug 14, catherine james rated it it was amazing Shelves: Throughout history women have struggled to make their way in a world where wealth and power is often dominated by men. As Suzanne Simoni details the lives and careers of ten filmmakers, it's clear the film industry is no exception.

Fantastic Female Filmmakers (Electronic book text)

Even in the this, the twenty-first century, less than fifteen percent of directors in and outside of Hollywood are female. Simoni subjects are Berlin-born Margarethe von Trotta's, who aims to create thought-provoking films about women's internal conflicts, Mira Nair who went against conventional Indian tastes by filming street scenes in Bombay; and Euzhan Palcy, the first filmmaker male or female to create a picture depicting the lives of black people on the French-speaking island of Martinique.

This is a fantastic book for the aspiring filmmaker, or anyone who just wants to know a bit more about the history of celluloid. Originally posted at TeensReadToo. Sep 03, Jennifer Wardrip rated it it was amazing Shelves: Reviewed by Cat for TeensReadToo. Even in this, the twenty-first century, less than fifteen percent of directors in and outside of Hollywood are female.

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Rather, it is a testament to the strength, determination, and not to mention creative and technical advancements that women have made in movie-making over the last one hundred years; a template for incoming and future generations; and an inspiration for following one's own instincts. Simoni's subjects are Berlin-born Margarethe von Trotta, who aims to create thought-provoking films about women's internal conflicts; Mira Nair, who went against conventional Indian tastes by filming street scenes in Bombay; and Euzhan Palcy, the first filmmaker male or female to create a picture depicting the lives of black people on the French-speaking island of Martinique.

This book covers every facet of the lives of these women including their personal relationships, career mistakes and successes, their views on the filmmaking process and advice to aspiring filmmakers.