The BFI London Film Festival was a show of strength for women in film. Whether they were behind or infront of the camera, making films or involved in their consumption women were out in force in London this year.
The presence of women begins from the top of the British Film Institute (BFI) itself with Amanda Revill the Chief Executive of the BFI. The leading rolls for the London Festival are also held by women. Tricia Tuttle as the Artistic Director and Anne-Marie Flynn the Managing Director. Plus two of the three Film Programmers are women as well as the Producer of the full event.
The programing featured 38% female directors with 50% in the areas for competition.
And of course the films themselves featured some amazing, talented women in leading roles with strong diverse story lines. Of the 12 Headline Galas these are the 50% featuring women:
WIDOWS - An all female heist movie with Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Erivo.
THE FAVOURITE - A period drama with a lesbian twist featuring Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, Rachel Weisz.
CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME? - A caustically funny art forgery movie with leading lady Melissa McCarthy.
COLETTE - Literary tale of gender rules with Keira Knightley.
A PRIVATE WAR - A biopic of the war correspondent Marie Colvin played by Rosamund Pike.
SUSPIRIA - A horror classic reimagined with a feminist update starring Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton.
Finally, the winner of the Best Film Award went to Sudabeh Mortezai for JOY. And indeed it was a joy to witness the scope and skill of women. After all, we do make up 49.6% of the population.