The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) will now allot half of its production spending to female-directed films, government film commissioner Claude Joli-Coeur announced Tuesday, International Women’s Day, at the Vancouver International Women in Film Festival.
“Today, I’m making a firm, ongoing commitment to full gender parity, which I hope will help to lead the way for the industry as a whole,” said Joli-Coeur, who’s also a NFB chairperson.
The agency plans to adopt a transparent approach to implementing these measures — which will be rolled out over the next three years — by providing updates on the NFB’s website, allowing the public to track its progress.
According to a recent report by nonprofit org Women in View on the Canadian film industry, women represented only 17% of directors, 22% of writers and 12% of cinematographers in a sample of 91 feature films produced between 2013 and 2014.
With this commitment to gender equality, NFB is striving to improve these numbers. The agency approaches staffing decisions in a similar way, with females comprising 66% of the NFB’s upper management and occupying 77% of the NFB Board of Trustee positions.
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The NFB’s slate of upcoming female-directed films include Zayne Akyol’s “Terre de Roses, mon nom est Gulistan,” Marie Clements’ “The Road Forward,” Ann Marie Fleming’s “Window Horses” and Tiffany Hsiung’s “The Apology.”