Film and Sexism

Equal opportunity for women in the film industry has been an ongoing issue every year.  As last year’s statistics show both onscreen and behind the scene of film, there is inequality between female and male roles (Lauzen, 2017).

Lauzen (2017a, pp. 5) and Lauzen (2017, pp. 1).

There were a lack of female roles in the cast of the recently released war movie Dunkirk (Truitt, 2017), which raised some controversial discussions (Cooke 2017).

Dunkirk men
Gorden, 2017

The movie about a momentous historic war event which occurred, where around 340,000 men on the beaches were evacuated during World War II.  Where in actual fact back then, there were very little female military on the front line battle field (Vespa, 2017).

Dunkirk image
Vespa, 2017

Recent protests have been calling for the need of equality, diversity and more female roles in film (Berger 2015).  “We were frustrated because there wasn’t the roles for us,” Nicole Kidman said, at the recent Emmy awards ceremony.

Image taken from the set of the TV Series ‘Big Little Lies’, with Nicole Kidnam (right) and Reece Witherspoon (middle) and Shailene Woodley (left), (The Sydney Morning Herald, 2017).

Big name celebrities such as Nicole Kidman, Reece Witherspoon’s and Shailene Woodley joined together to produce an award winning TV series, which directly enables more roles for women on screen.

‘There wasn’t the roles for us’: Nicole Kidman’s push for equality on screen, (Singer, 2017).



Bainbridge, J., Goc, N., & Tynan, L. (2015). Media and journalism new approaches to theory and practice. Melbourne, Vic.

Berger, L. (2017).  Quote of the day: Reece Witherspoon says women should pay 50% of the roles on screen, Retrieved from Indiewire,

Cooke, C. (2017). [Twitter post] Retrieved from

Gorden, S.  (Photographer). (2107).  Dunkirk image. [Photograph]. Retrieved from

Jones, D., & Pringle, J. (2015).  Unmanageable inequalities: sexism in the film industry.  Journal of The Sociological Review, Retrieved from

Lauzen, M. (2017).  The Celluloid Ceiling:  Behind -the-scenes employment of women on the top 100, 250, and 500 films of 2016.  Retrieved from

Lauzen, M. (2017a).  Boxed in 2016-17: Women on screen and behind the scenes in television.  Retrieved from Center for the study of women in television & Film,  San Diego State University,

Singer, M. (2017).  There wasn’t the roles for us’: Nicole Kidman’s push for equality on screen,  The Sydney Morning Herald.  Retrieved from

Truitt, B. (2017).  Review: Christopher Nolan’s ‘Dunkirk’ examines WWII heroism up close, Retrieved from USA Today,

Vespa, M. (2017).  USA Today: ‘Dunkirk’s’ limited number of roles for women and minorities ‘May rub some the wrong way’.   Retrieved from Townhall,