From 2007-2019, the 1,300 most popular new releases had a total of 1,448 director credits.
Film Directors in the Top 1,300 Films
Films with at least one woman director had a higher percentage of women writers, editors, and cinematographers than films with exclusively male directors.
In independent films, women accounted for 33% of directors.
There is a 23.5% drop in women directors from narrative independent films to top grossing films. (27.8% to 4.3%)
A total of 112 directors helmed the 100 top-grossing films of 2018. 96.4% were men and only 3.6% of directors were women, which calculates into a gender ratio of 27 to 1.
The percentage of women directors remained unchanged over time until 2019, when there was a small improvement in the number of women directors, though nowhere near close to parity.
San Diego State Center for the Study of Women in Television & Film
USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative
Hollywood’s Image of a Woman Director is a White Woman
Race/Ethnicity of 57 woman directors across 1,300 films
When women directors are hired, they are overwhelmingly white women.
Age is Related to Directing Assignments for Women
Director Gender by Age
While the average age of directors did not vary by gender (the average age for a male director is 46.5 years and for women directors it is 46 years), career span did. Men work across 7 decades (their 20s through their 80s) whereas women work across 4 (their 30s through their 60s).
Gender Differences in Career Opportunities
Number of Films for Directors
For each director, USC ANNENBERG assessed the number of times across the 12-year time frame they were attached to direct one of the 1,200 top movies. A total of 704 individual directors held one of these prestigious posts (658 men, 46 women). The range of work experience varied by gender, with men having a larger directing span (1-17 films) than women (1-4 films). Most women directors (83%) only made one film within the top-grossing sample in comparison to 54% of their male peers.