‘Ghostbusters’ Dir. Paul Feig Feels Guilty About The Lack Of Female Directors In Hollywood

paul-feig

If only Hollywood contained more men like director Paul Feig…

Or perhaps it does, but they are too scared to speak up in fear of rocking the boat or (shock horror) changing the ratio to be a little more gender equal?

Who knows, all we do know is that the ‘Bridesmaids’ director is a loud and proud supporter of the increased representation of women in Hollywood, especially behind the camera.

At the recent SXSW festival in Austin Texas where he premiered his new film ‘Spy’ featuring Melissa McCarthy, he told the Huffington Post that he doesn’t believe Hollywood has gotten any better. This comment was in reference to what he said in 2013 after his film ‘The Heat’ starring Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy was released.

“We’re not advancing as much as we should be,” he had been quoted as saying, and it seems he still feels the same.

Feig, unlike the majority of directors, is known for his work with leading female comedic characters, and will do this yet again when he directs the new all-female ‘Ghostbusters’. And although we are sure he loves his job, he feels guilty that there are many female directors who don’t get to do what he does, but should be.

“Look at the number lady directors. I have guilt that I’m a man doing these movies. Women should be doing them, too! The studios aren’t giving them the opportunity for whatever reason, and the roles still aren’t there for women like they should be.”

Even after the first female Ghostbusters cast was announced, there was still some backlash from fans and critics alike. Thankfully, previous cast member Dan Akroyd championed the cause of female empowerment and praised the female reboot of the popular film.

Paul doesn’t like that opportunities like these are so few and far between for women.

“It’s hard enough to pick four actresses! There are so many funny women out there and they need these roles. I hate that. I hate that there isn’t more opportunity.”

It’s very rare to hear a male Hollywood director speaking out so highly in favor of female-driven movies. It’s the type of conversation we only hear from women who want more of their stories being told. But the truth is, we need both female AND male directors talking about the importance of this, and allowing a whole range of Hollywood executives to see that this is something both genders want to see.

female-ghostbusters-cast

“I love doing these genre movies. Because there are women in it…but they’re not acting like men. They’re acting like women would. I love the theme of female friendship. I’ve seen it with my wife, and how important and difficult it is. So I enjoy that. To me, that’s more interesting than trying to work out a relationship with a man. There are plenty of those movies being made, so I don’t have any interest in doing them.”

He cites the James Bond ‘Skyfall’ movie as the inspiration for ‘Spy’. Being a big fan of the James Bond franchise, he realized that he was in a unique position to recreate it his way and change the narrative a little by including women as the heroes.

“I was sitting there at my desk one day and I thought, ‘I know all these funny women, why don’t I write a female spy movie?’ I had a bazillion ideas. My brain exploded.”

Part of his decision to reboot ‘Ghostbusters’ was to engage a whole new generation of fans who didn’t grow up watching Dan Akroyd, Harold Ramis and Bill Murray in the original movie series, which incidentally is still one of the highest selling comedies in Hollywood even today.

When you think about it, the time is right and it is smart to want to flip the script for a generation that is hopefully not going to grow up with the same gender constraints and stereotypes that we currently are still trying to break free from as a society.

“I just think it’s a great franchise that’s been sitting dormant for 25 years…I loved the original one so much that I want to have that experience again, and I want a new generation to have that experience too.”

‘Spy’ hits theaters this summer, but in the meantime we hope Paul’s words will continue to make an impact amongst key Hollywood decision makers, because ‘Ghostbusters’ isn’t the only thing that needs a good reboot!

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2 Comments

  1. Pingback: 'Spy' Director Paul Feig On Women In Comedy & Female Directors

  2. Pingback: Director Ryan Coogler On Women In Hollywood, Whitewashing Characters, & 'Black Panther' - GirlTalkHQ

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