Toronto Film Festival Organizers Commit to Gender Parity in Their Ranks

Festival will also disclose gender and racial makeup of filmmakers

Last Updated: September 8, 2018 @ 6:54 AM

The Toronto International Film Festival has pledged to achieve gender parity on its board of directors and within executive ranks, the organization announced on Saturday.

Festival Artistic Director Cameron Bailey signed the statement at a media event, pledging not only to increase the visibility and power of women but also to disclose key demographic data.

TIFF has agreed to share the “gender and race of the directors of all the films submitted … and when applicable, to also compile all members of the cast and crew mentioned in the registration process of the film,” a document obtained by TheWrap said.

They’ll also share “gender and race of executive boards and/or boards of directors and to commit to a schedule to achieve parity in these bodies.” Specifics around schedule timing was not immediately available.

In August, just ahead of the 2018 program, TIFF named Joana Vicente as executive director and co-head of the festival.

The pledge preceded a planned rally by the TIFF initiative Share Her Journey, a program designed to increase opportunities for women in the film industry.

The gender parity pledge is one of a number of gender-parity commitments from major industry leaders, though festivals have been criticized for not extending their pledge to equally represent female filmmakers in the selection of films they show to audiences.

TIFF will offer its first report on its progress at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival, organizers said.

Read the full pledge points:

To compile statistics of gender and race of the directors of all the films submitted to selection, and when applicable, to also compile all members of the cast and crew mentioned in the registration process of the film.

To make public the gender and race of all the members of selection committees and programmers as well as all programming consultants.

To make public the gender and race of executive boards and/or boards of directors and to commit to a schedule to achieve parity in these bodies.

The festival commits to giving a full update to 5050×2020 in six months and also to make public their progress during next year’s festival.

5050×2020 will be compiling the list of participating festivals and will share it widely. We will also release a first report at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival.