Studio executives often protest that there simply aren’t enough talented female filmmakers to choose from. They are wrong.
Enough with the studios like 20th Century Fox, Sony, Paramount, and the Weinstein Company, none of which put out even a single film this year that was directed by a woman.
Enough with the executives who would rather hand a lucrative blockbuster to a man who’s never made a movie before (like Seth Grahame-Smith, the novice director recently picked by Warner Bros. to direct a big-budget adaptation of The Flash) than a woman who has.
And enough with the producers who claim that there’s still just a shallow pool of female directors to draw from, because we’ve got 100 reasons why that’s not the case.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of the best and brightest female directors in the industry, very few of whom are afforded the same major opportunities as their male counterparts. Some are promising up-and-comers, while others are award-winning veterans. Their talents run the gamut from comedy to drama, and from action to arthouse. Contrary to what Hollywood would have you believe, it wasn’t hard to assemble such an enormous list of smart, eminently hireable female directors. The only difficult part was culling it down to just 100.
A former fighting champion in real life, Alexander specializes in kicking ass onscreen, as seen in her films Green Street Hooligans and Punisher: War Zone (the rare comic-book adaptation helmed by a woman). Alexander’s not afraid to fight back on Twitter either, calling out industry sexism on the regular.
Studios haven’t done a great job of handing big movies to female filmmakers, but the statistics are even more woeful when it comes to women of color. Why not poach Debbie Allen, a pioneer who’s directed countless episodes of television over nearly 30 years? Recently, Allen’s lent her skills to Scandal and Grey’s Anatomy, and the actress-director continues to appear on the latter show in a recurring role.
Ana Lily Amirpour
Watch this poetic, patient encounter from Amirpour’s acclaimed A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night and you’ll understand why the Iranian-American director has enticed Jason Momoa, Keanu Reeves, and Jim Carrey to star in the badass-sounding The Bad Batch, a postapocalyptic cannibal love story produced by Megan Ellison.