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Showing posts from November, 2017

NZ Update #12: Everything's Gonna Be All Right?

Look at these two! Our Prime Minister and our distinguished filmmaker and global advocate for women filmmakers meet, at last week's SPADA (Screen Production and Development Association) conference. Look at their pleasure in each other. Their body language. Their close attention.




For me, this meeting is a significant turning point in the movement to gender equity in the allocation of public money for screen storytelling. The first one was at 2015's Big Screen Symposium, when Chelsea Cohen – with support from other Māori women – spoke out  about the need to allocate New Zealand Film Commission funding equally to women and men. Our first woman writer/director/producer to do this publicly. Her courage made it safer for others to follow her example.

So: what might this Jacinda-And-Jane meeting mean?

The new government has already announced its commitment to pay equity and I think we can now be confident that gender equity will infuse screen production. I think we can also be confid…

Guetty Felin & ‘Ayiti Mon Amour’, Haiti’s Entry in the Foreign Language Oscar

Women directed 25 of the 92 films in contention for the Foreign Language Oscar in 2018 (27%), those submitted by Afghanistan, Argentina, Armenia, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Croatia, Ecuador, Georgia, Haiti, Hungary, Iran, Laos, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, Palestine, Panama, Paraguay, Poland, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand. This is an all-time record. There are also six LGBTQ-related films, from Chile, Finland, France, Norway, South Africa and Taiwan.



Guetty Felin’s Ayiti Mon Amour is a magical-realist film that centres on a young man, Orphée, who mourns his father’s death in the 7.0 earthquake of 2010. It is Haiti’s very first submission for the Foreign Language Oscar and Guetty is the first Haitian-born female director ever to have shot a narrative feature entirely in Haiti. She’d earlier made a post-earthquake feature documentary called Broken Stones.

Here in AotearoaNZ, we live with regular earthquakes, and over the last few years some of them have been ma…

Europe's Leap Towards Gender Equality in the Audiovisual Sector

Europe has vaulted ahead in gender equity in film, thanks to September's comprehensive Council of Europe Recommendation on Gender Equality in the Audiovisual Sector (Recommendation) and then October's Gender Equality Strategy 2018-2020 (Gender Strategy) from Eurimages, the Council of Europe's organisation for film co-production, theatrical distribution, exhibition, promotion and gender equality.

(Eurimages has 37 members from among the Council of Europe's 47 member states; and Canada is an associate member. I'd love Aotearoa New Zealand to become an associate member, too.)

Through establishing principles of a wider scope than anywhere else in the world, the Recommendation aims to rectify the following, not just in film and television, but throughout the audiovisual industries: Watch out, gaming! Music industry take note!–

1. Lack of awareness of the prevalence of gender inequality.
2. Conscious and unconscious gender bias at all levels of the industry.
3. …