‘Wonder Woman’ Director Patty Jenkins Urges: Hire Women for ‘All Kinds of Things,’ Not Just Film

Filmmaker says she hopes success of film will “lead to change”

Last Updated: August 25, 2017 @ 10:45 AM

“Wonder Woman” recently surpassed the $400 million domestic box office benchmark, further highlighting the success of the superhero film starring Gal Gadot and Chris Pine. And director Patty Jenkins says she hopes the mega-movie will lead to more women being hired in all areas, not just film.

“I just hope — and am touched by it — and I think it’s amazing if the success of this film can lead to change and lead to other people getting opportunities. That’s amazing,” Jenkins said in a conference call with media outlets, including TheWrap, on Wednesday. “I hope that women become a diverse, easy hire for all kinds of things in the future.”

The director chimed in on whether she anticipated studios hiring female directors after seeing the success of “Wonder Woman.” Jenkins responded that she had, in fact, anticipated that, given that “any success in Hollywood is followed by people trying to do more of that kind of thing.”

One example of a recent hire in film is Reed Morano, who became attached to Blake Lively’s spy thriller “The Rhythm Section,” adapted from Mark Burnell’s espionage series. Morano will direct the first film in what the studio is hoping will become a franchise.

Hollywood has long been criticized for lack of diversity among talent in front and behind the camera. In May, TheWrap reported that only 6 percent of the movies slated for wide release this year from the six major Hollywood studios are directed by women. In addition, two of the six major studios — Disney and 20th Century Fox — have no movies on their 2017 release slates directed by women.

Eighty percent of female directors made only one movie in from 2007 to 2016, according to recent findings from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg’s Media, Diversity & Social Change Initiative. To compare, 54.8 percent of male directors made just one movie during that same period.

“Wonder Woman” starred Gal Gadot and Chris Pine and was critically and commercially lauded. It broke several records, including the highest grossing live-action film directed by a woman. A sequel has already been greenlit and will be released on Dec. 13, 2019. Jenkins is in final negotiations to direct it.

“Wonder Woman” will be digitally released on August 29.

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