×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Berlin: Powering up women

Network aims to get more femmes in the biz

A new European organization for women working in the film industry launches in Berlin today.

The European Women’s Audiovisual Network, headed by Spanish director Isabel Coixet, whose “Yesterday Never Ends” is playing in the Panorama Special section, aims to create more opportunities for female directors, crew and specialists across the creative industries, including film, television, games and online media.

It’s particularly keen to bring on more femme directors, particularly in features, and up the overall representation of women in the industry.

Coixet said she had experienced difficulties raising money for her films and felt strongly that it was related to her gender.

“Every time I teach in a film school I face the same challenge: how to teach girls to believe they really can be film directors, when I know it is going to be much more difficult for them then for boys,” Coixet said. “I always use a very graphic example: the film industry is like a rocky mountain; boys climb with boots and sticks, girls must climb naked except for a pair of really high heels and suitcase full of stones.”

The cultural dismissal of women was so ingrained that many people, including some women, did not see it as a problem, she added.

“We need female superheroes; big budgets; the right to be bitchy if we feel like it and to stop apologizing for being bitchy; and an alert audience who, if they are not watching films directed by women, are missing the point of view of the other half of ‘mankind.’ ”

The EWA also wants national film funds and European institutions to gather more gender-specific information, which currently only a handful of film institutions collect.

Francine Hetherington Raveney, Strasbourg-based general coordinator, said: “There are no pan-European studies on women in this industry; the data is just not available.”

Hetherington Raveney took a sabbatical from Eurimages, where she was a coproduction project analyst, to work with EWA.

She is working with universities including London’s Birkbeck, Spain’s Zaragoza and the Stockholm Academy of Arts, to set up research projects into how female directors can overcome obstacles to raising coin for their films.

EWA was initially founded with the backing of Spanish government money and ICAA, the Spanish film fund 2010; Hetherington Raveney came on board to broaden its scope across the 47 countries that are members of the Council of Europe.

More Scene

  • Mj Rodriguez, Alexis Martin Woodall, Ryan

    Peabody Winners Talk Empowered Women and Social Justice Challenges on Red Carpet

    The theme on the red carpet at the 78th annual Peabody Awards? Empowering women. On Saturday, Peabody winners gathered at Cipriani Wall Street, and one of the hot topics on everyone’s mind was the wave of female empowerment spreading across the industry. From Peabody’s Career Achievement Award recipient Rita Moreno to shows like ‘Killing Eve’ [...]

  • CAP D'ANTIBES, FRANCE - MAY 18:

    Cannes: Robert Pattinson, Shailene Woodley Attend Starry Vanity Fair Party

    It’s true what they say about Batman being a loner. On Saturday night, Robert Pattinson made his first public appearance since being cast as the new Dark Knight at this year’s Vanity Fair Party at the Cannes Film Festival. But while all the other A-list guests mingled and worked the crowd at the restaurant of [...]

  • Taron Egerton Cannes Film Festival 2019

    Taron Egerton Addresses ‘Rocketman’ Comparisons to ‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ Takes Subtle Jab at Bryan Singer

    Taron Egerton says that he’s flattered by comparisons between his Elton John musical “Rocketman” and “Bohemian Rhapsody,” last year’s smash hit about Queen frontman Freddie Mercury. “I’m proud that we’re mentioned in the same breath,” says Egerton, who plays John in the upcoming “Rocketman,” which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival to a five-minute standing [...]

  • Ethan Hawke, Bobby Cannavale and Griffin

    BAM Gala Marks Leadership Change, Celebrates Brooklyn as 'Cultural Center of New York'

    Wednesday’s annual gala celebrating the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) served as a poignant moment of transition for the New York stalwart of contemporary performance. As long-time artistic director Joe Melillo, who along with Harvey Lichtenstein transformed BAM into a vanguard of progressive art, prepares to pass the torch to new leadership, gathered patrons and [...]

  • Dua Lipa Tom Jones

    Dua Lipa and Tom Jones to Perform at amfAR's Cannes Gala (EXCLUSIVE)

    Variety‘s Marc Malkin is on the scene at the Cannes Film Festival. Get the scoop on all the news, parties and more straight from the Croisette below. AmfAR’s upcoming Cannes gala is shaping up quite nicely. Sources tell Variety that the evening will feature performances by Dua Lipa and Tom Jones. And they’re not the only [...]

  • "Deadwood" Cast Describes Emotional Homecoming on

    'Deadwood' Cast Describes Emotional Homecoming on the Historic Set

    The phrase “Welcome the f— back” marks the billboards and posters for the return of “Deadwood,” but that sentiment doesn’t just apply to the audience. Returning to the town of Deadwood was a homecoming of sorts for the cast and crew of the HBO show, who shared that stepping back into the meticulously recreated late-1800s [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content