The most employed women in the British film industry

Female director with clapperboardLast week I looked at the most employed people in the UK film industry.  This week I thought I would merge this approach with a topic I have written a lot about previously, namely gender. I took a look at the women in the British film industry who have the most credits over the last 10 years across all UK films budgeted over £500k. In summary…

  • 11% of the people who have directed two or more UK films 2003-13 are women
  • Women in the British film industry are far better represented in producing than in writing and directing
  • 25 of the top 104 UK producers are women
  • Novelist J.K. Rowling is the woman with the most writing credits in UK film 2003-13

Directors

Women in the British film industry - Gurinder ChadhaWomen in the British film industry - Mary McGuckianJust 11% of the people who have directed two or more UK films 2003-13 are women.

# female directors# all directorsNameCredits
17Mary McGuckian5
234Gurinder Chadha3
234Debbie Isitt3
234Sally Potter3
234Penny Woolcock3
234Andrea Arnold3
756Mairi Fraser Sutherland2
756Joan Carr-Wiggin2
756Vicky Jewson2
756Madonna2
756Deepa Mehta2
756Inés París2
756Isabel Coixet2

Producers

Women in the British film industry - Liza ChasinWomen in the British film industry - Tessa RossWomen in the British film industry are far better represented in producing than in writing and directing. 25 of the top 104 UK producers are women (i.e. those who have produced at least 11 UK feature films 2003-13).

# female producers# all producersNameCredits
12Tessa Ross39
211Liza Chasin24
313Christine Langan23
313Carola Ash23
525Charlotte Walls19
632Debra Hayward18
632Julia Blackman18
632Sam Taylor18
632Gillian Berrie18
1043Linda James16
1145Zorana Piggott15
1145Rosa Romero15
1360Lizzie Francke13
1360Liza Marshall13
1360Gail Egan13
1360Katherine Butler13

Screenwriters

Women in the British film industry - Jane GoldmanWomen in the British film industry - JK RowlingNovelist J.K. Rowling is the woman with the most number of writing credits in UK film 2003-13. I’ve included all writing credits, hence the appearance of J.K. Rowling and Jane Austin. However, if we look strictly at screenplay credits, as opposed to source material, then Jane Goldman (‘Kick-ass’ and ‘X-men’) and Abi Morgan (‘The Iron Lady’ and ‘Brick Lane’) share the top spot.

# female writers# all writersNameCredits
15J.K. Rowling6
212Jane Goldman5
212Abi Morgan5
427Mary McGuckian4
427Gurinder Chadha4
652Debbie Isitt3
652Sally Potter3
652Andrea Arnold3
652Penny Woolcock3
652Joan Carr-Wiggin3
652Mairi Fraser Sutherland3
652Jane Austen3
652Mark O'Rowe3
652Emma Thompson3
652Moira Buffini3
652Bridget O'Connor3

Epilogue – Most employed women in the British film industry

I used the BFI’s tracking data for films made between 2003 and 2013 to define what was and wasn’t a UK film.  I have no doubt that some of these classifications will be disputed as (a) the BFI are not perfect and (b) film can be a subjective field.  If any of the people listed above feel aggrieved that their number of credits is incorrect then please do drop me a line. This research looks at number of credits, not number of days worked.  Consequently, someone who worked one day apiece on ten films will get ten credits whereas someone else who performed ten days work on a single film will be listed as having one credit.  There is little I can do to account for this possible unfairness.