An Artistic Call to Arms: Amendment
Amendment: Ok, so it has become apparent to me that the message I was trying to spread in the above post was about as clear as mud. I am NOT, repeat, am NOT calling for artists who are already making billions of dollars doing whatever works now. I’m calling out to those of us who aspire to be in Hollywood one day to hopefully change the material that gets the green light.
And by “change” I am by no means implying that movies like Hannah or Columbiana should cease to exist or something. Nor am I suggesting that all movies that come out should be inspirational by nature. On the contrary, I’m suggesting that there be more Ellen Page’s in Hard Candy, especially from people of color. I’m suggesting there be more movies like Bridesmaids or It’s Complicated or Doubt again especially with people of color. The point I was making was there is a certain lack of DIVERSITY of content in roles created for women in Hollywood. The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in the Media has been working since it’s inception to evaluate the nature of how women are portrayed in general. According to the website, in family films there is only 1 female character for every 3 males! This is what I’m talking about. And has anyone considered what all the sexy and romantic images of the female sex does? Consider that when boys watch the films of their liking they’re more likely to do awesome things in life because they see their male heroes doing awesome things on the screen like in the Die Hard series. Some little boy became a cop because of that movie. But when all girls are seeing is women falling in love, don’t you think that alters the programming of what girls think women are supposed to be? And how many families you know just up and watch indie films all day? Living in a society where much of our biases, assumptions, etc. are shaped by the media, and where most kids especially now-a-days are being raised by the electronics in the house, let’s not forget that what we create develops people’s thinking.
As a child I honestly thought that falling in love was just like it was in the movies, and having a job was just like it was in the movies, being an adult was just like the movies. Didn’t you hear that “art imitates life?” So why wouldn’t I think that? Don’t you get all those tweets saying “if he loves you, he’ll never hurt you?” UH, HELLO, that idea totally came from a movie, because everyone knows in real life, hurt is imminent. Just a part of being alive. But movies make us think differently. So let’s push the envelope and go further. Give girls as home something to look up to, as well as increase the types of roles women are playing.
I know there are many independent films who meet this ideal, however since last time I checked my fellow GM people were trying to make it past indie films into Hollywood, why not start from the bottom up? Why not ask the grass-roots people to start the movement and bring it with them when they make it big? Again, I know Hollywood is not going to become an all-inclusive party over night, or turn away from the things that make them money. Which is why people start new scholastic programs with freshmen as guinea pigs, not seniors. Consider this my call to those still in the “freshmen category.” Get your pens, pencils, laptops, paper, typewriter, whatever, and contemplate possibilities for those who aren’t seen on the screen very often. That’s the call. A call for diversity. But as we all know, many are called and few are chosen (and even fewer actually answer the call afterwards). So this Diva will write, scratch my chin, act and twiddle my thumbs as I watch the future of show business unfold.