Tuesday, June 2, 2015


Gina Prince-Bythewood

It’s interesting that people ask me a lot if I’m discriminated against as a black female director and I don’t think I am, because I’m offered a ton of stuff. I just don’t take it. What’s discriminated against are my choices: to focus on women. Those films are not greenlit as often as a film that focuses on a guy...it is a harder fight....

I would consider myself a feminist.

I wouldn’t say I make feminist movies, but my mindset influences what I write and what I direct. It’s interesting that there are so many different definitions of feminism, but for me, being in this male-dominated career, it’s bizarre to me there aren’t more females. Talent has no gender. It makes no sense...

I think part of my whole thing comes from sports as well—I grew up an athlete, it’s such a part of who I am. Being in sports, I just grew up knowing that aggression is good. The way I walk on set or into a meeting is like I’m walking out on the court.

I would agree with her assessment of herself. Or maybe should I say her assessment of her own movies, since I don't know her?

Gina Prince-Bythewood doesn't make feminist movies but her mindset affects the characters she writes or molds through directing. I can say the same thing about Chimamanda's Ngozi Adichie's books, "Americanah" in particular and  J.K. Rowling's* "Harry Potter" series as well

When feminist women create female characters I can see the difference in the strengths, weakness, vulnerabilities, failures, and triumphs in the female characters approach things - even the non-feminist female characters are more three dimensional, even in a love story. 

In Love And Basketball, Beyond The Lights, Frida, The Color Purple, and Harry Potter you can see feminist created female characters in films and books take responsibility for taking up the space they are supposed to take up, be a whole completely feminine person who is capable of being interdependent with men or independent of men. Even if the female character is just plain screwing up, they are wholly adult. And that means they are always capable of making a better next choice.

What more can you ask for in a fictional character that your girl child might want to pretend to be for a while?  


My definition of feminist: Women who get stuff done and enrich others.