When Will The Golden Globes Recognize Women Directors?

When it comes to gender diversity, the 75th annual Golden Globe Awards nominations missed the mark. Most notably, the nominees for the Best Director category—released this week in the midst of a feminist reckoning in Hollywood—are all white and male.

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2017 was a particularly hard year to overlook women’s contributions in the film industry—adding insult to injury. Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird was the best-reviewed film in Rotten Tomatoes history (until a male critic gave it its first negative review). Dee Rees’ Mudbound was named the #1 Best Film of the Year by the Washington Post. And Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman, which broke records at the box office, wasn’t nominated in any category.

The women snubbed this year didn’t just direct films that critics loved, but films whose protagonists were also women—and whose stories help viewers grapple with complex social issues. Mudbound tackles the intersections of race and gender; Wonder Woman presented female strength and allowed viewers to imagine women literally smashing the patriarchy to pieces.

“The push to hire and recognize female directors has intensified in the wake of the Academy’s efforts to improve diversity and the massive sexual harassment scandals that are gripping Hollywood,” Pat Saperstein wrote for Variety. “Instead, the [Hollywood Foreign Press Association] nominated Guillermo del Toro, whose The Shape of Water had the most noms overall, Martin McDonagh, Christopher Nolan, Ridley Scott and Steven Spielberg.”

The Best Director category at the Golden Globes has long been male-dominated. This is the second year in the row that only men were nominated. Only three women have been nominated in the category in the last 20 years, none of which won. And only one woman has ever won the award—Barbra Streisand, 33 years ago in 1984, for Yentl. 

“The message I’m getting is that no woman in the past 33 years has made a movie worthy of being considered above those created by men,” Anne Cohen wrote for Refinery29.” The fact that Wonder Woman wasn’t nominated for a single category, despite its monumental success at the box office and universal praise, is especially telling. That would require an acknowledgment that female stories, told from a female point of view, matter as much as those of men. And apparently, that’s not a concession Hollywood is willing to make.”




Lynn Rosado is an editorial intern at Ms. She studied at California State University, Northridge, where she received her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism.