In recent years, moviegoers have made it clear that they would like to see just as much diversity behind the camera as in front of it. Unfortunately, it’s been slow going, and while we’ll get to see Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman this coming summer, big budget blockbusters remain a type of film that are seemingly dominated by white, male directors.
We know that Marvel Studios is actively seeking a woman to direct Captain Marvel, and with Disney and Lucasfilm now releasing yearly Star Wars movies, they’re surely going to hire a woman to take the helm of an upcoming instalment, right? Well, maybe not.
During a recent interview, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy confirmed that while they want to bring a female filmmaker on board, they’re biding the time in order to find a director with the right level of experience.
“We want to make sure that when we bring a female director in to do Star Wars they’re set up for success. They’re gigantic films, and you can’t come into them with essentially no experience. We want to really start to focus in on people we would love to work with and see what kinds of things they’re doing to progress up that ladder now, and then pull them in when the time is right.”
These comments have understandably generated a fair bit of controversy, especially as it’s impossible for female directors to gain experience when the door is being closed on them in this manner.
Besides, plenty of men have been hired to take the helm of big movies without much prior experience – just look at Star Wars directors Rian Johnson and Colin Trevorrow, neither of whom had a ton of credits under their belt when they were brought on to direct. While we agree that hiring a woman just for the sake of it would no doubt be a mistake, Kennedy’s comments are certainly more than a little disheartening to hear.