I was somewhere between faintly bored and nodding out as I read various N.Y. Times articles answering the question “How Can Women Gain Influence in Hollywood?” Okay, Martha Coolidge wrote a pretty good one (called “Our Entire Belief System Must Change“) but the only piece I really liked was by recently-appointed San Francisco Film Festival honcho Ted Hope, called “Get With The Times.” Here’s a portion:
“The film business should redesign itself to process the abundance of and access to hugely varied content, much of it made by women.
“Leadership is required to recognize that When Harry Met Sally, Bridesmaids and Lost in Translation are not outliers, but clear indicators of vast communities of underserved audiences. Unfortunately, the movie industry is designed to follow the competitor, creating perpetually redundant stories, creators and executives. The entire film business remains predicated on antiquated concepts of scarcity of content and control thereof. It should instead get ambitious and start to redesign itself for today’s reality of super-abundance of — and total access to — hugely varied content.
“I am hopeful that the excess of leisure options will dictate that we all reduce our impulse buys and move toward informed choice of what we actually desire. This should presumably lead to a vast change in infrastructure and leadership. As we shift our entertainment economy away from the mass market to niche communities, we should finally see that we need producers and executives who deeply understand those who have long been neglected. Often these artists — many of them women — remain incredibly passionate about intelligent stories that sing with emotional truth.
“When Hollywood’s business side finally and consistently matches women’s storytelling prowess with a recognition of and commitment to the evolving communities that engage around their story worlds, women will rise everywhere as a result.”