Slated put together a comprehensive look at the film industry gender gap and came up with a surprising answer to why female driven films under perform. The answer will surprise you.
It's not quality of writing. It's not return on investment. And it's not a smaller pool of film talent. It's distribution. That's all. Female driven content outperforms male-centered stories financially, but distributors are showing them on fewer screens. It's a trust gap that happens when distributors decide which films they will show on how many screens. The "glass ceiling" is occurring in the minds of the people that are bidding on films at festivals.
Time for women to push harder into the distribution chain of command?
From the Slated research:
"Women Writers seem particularly shortchanged: Their scripts achieve the highest ROI of any category and yet their work commands two-thirds of the average budgets given to Male Writers. This imbalance becomes particularly egregious for films budgeted at more than $25 million, a category in which Women Writers achieve an industry-high ROI of 3.72 and yet account for just 8.7% of theatrically released screenplays.
Even though male writers generate considerably more theatrical material than women writers, the market potential for their screenplays is essentially the same. The tiny difference in their Slated SCRIPT SCORES, an industry-weighted measure of a script’s quality that is derived from the year-adjusted performance analysis of 191 screenplays, does not come close to the imbalance in their script production volumes. For Male Writers that score is 78.0; for Female Writers it is 76.6."
See the full infographic, and read the hard numbers here >>> http://info.slated.com/data-exposes-gender-fault-lines-infographic/