By several metrics, 2022 has been a good year for women in the international film and TV business. UCLA’s annual Hollywood Diversity Report found the percentage of women in lead acting roles has nearly doubled over the past decade; that their share of writing credits has more than doubled; and that the percentage of women directors has increased by more than fivefold (from 4.1 percent in 2011 to 20.5 percent in 2020). In the U.K., the BBC’s most recent impact report on gender parity (in March) found that 61 percent of all BBC teams achieved 50 percent representation of women in their content, up from 35 percent in 2017. In June, Walt Disney Co. released employee data showing near exact pay equity, with women at the company earning 99.4 percent as much as men.
But those impressive advances also make clear the progress that still needs to be made. The old boys’ club of industry gatekeepers and C-suite decision-makers still holds sway, particularly outside North America.
“The industry has changed for the better over the years with more female representation, but there is always more work to be done,” says Banijay Rights CEO Cathy Payne, one of 20 executives on THR‘s 2022 list of the most powerful women in global entertainment. “It’s important to constantly invest in the next generation.”
Written by Patrick Brzeski, Alex Ritman, Scott Roxborough, Georg Szalai and Etan Vlessing
This story first appeared in the Oct. 5 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.