Lady Problems is a weekly column that looks at how the entertainment industry — and its corresponding culture and constituents — is treating women in a given week. (Hint: It will almost always be “poorly.”) Every Thursday we’ll review the week’s most significant woman-centric conflicts, then provide a brilliant solution to each problem that nobody in Hollywood will ever listen to or enforce.
The Lady Problem: The Guardian reports that Geena Davis is producing a documentary about gender inequality in Hollywood. This makes sense, as Geena Davis has been championing gender equality in Hollywood for years and has made it her personal mission to smush Michael Bay into a little rocket ship and propel him into the ether. "I’ve been encouraged by my peers speaking out on gender disparity in recent years, but we still are not seeing the actual number change," Davis said of the doc, which, according to The Guardian, will include information gathered by the Geena Davis Institute on Gender and Media, plus testimonials from women in the film industry. "There’s been no real improvement in the number of female roles since 1946, and there’s still a dearth of female directors." Davis added that she hopes the film will help solve this insidious problem.
Here is a thing that makes zero goddamn sense: This documentary is going to be directed by a man.
Tom Donahue, a male person who directed a bunch of random-ass movies and edited an episode of Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane, is set to helm the project, which, again, is about how there is a dearth of female directors in the industry. The mind REELS at this pure, uncut fuckery. Just last month, Indiewire published a piece highlighting 13 female directors ready to helm a blockbuster. And that isn't even scratching the surface of the hundreds of female directors ready to direct ANYTHING, women who have years of experience, women who've proven themselves time and time again, women who have not exclusively directed made-for-TV movies and documentaries nobody's ever heard of (not to mention all of the fledgling female directors who would KILL to cut their teeth on a project like this). I cannot imagine that Geena Davis greenlit this decision, unless she was distracted by her intricate work on the RocketBay.
The Solution: First of all, hire a fucking female director for this movie about how nobody hires female directors. What about, I don't know, Geena Davis?! Jesus CHRIST. Second of all, somebody check on Geena Davis and make sure she is not being held hostage in Tom Donahue's basement. Third of all, feel the harsh, blazing fire of irrepressible rage coursing through your veins. Harness it, ideally in some kind of test tube. Mail it to Geena Davis (℅ Tom Donahue's basement). It will power the Bay-ce Shuttle (sorry but not actually sorry) and all the ships thereafter that will ferry all manner of over-hired, under-qualified male talent to deep space. There, they will experience a different kind of dearth of women, and, having nobody to shit all over, they will slowly turn on and destroy themselves.
The Lady Problem: At this week's Produced By conference, an annual event put on by the Producers Guild of America, Morgan Freeman said. some. shit. Sitting next to his producing partner, Lori McCreary — who's worked with Freeman on films like Along Came a Spider and Invictus — Freeman explained that when he met McCreary, she was wearing a "dress cut to here." "She doesn’t want to be thought of as a pretty face," he added. "She wants to be thought of as serious. But you can’t get away from the short dresses." The Guardian reports that the panel's moderator, Mark Gordon, replied, "He's not a pig, I promise," then added, "Maybe he is," before pointing out the inherent sexism in Freeman's comments. Freeman's reply? "Sexist? Yeah, but I'm not misogynistic." According to The Guardian, McCreary "did not visibly react to his comments," but did later say — in a much more sensitive and thoughtful way — that she believes women make better producers. "I think inherently — I might be sexist — my construct is family, bringing people together," she said. "I'm not saying men aren’t that way."
The Solution: Morgan!! Damn you and your dulcet vocal cords that have lulled me into sleeps so deep I almost slept on this Lady Problem. Though Freeman is probably attempting to convey that he "discriminates against" women versus "wants to receive FedEx boxes of women's heads," as The Cut points out, the terms "misogyny" and "sexism" are essentially synonymous at this point in history. Whatever you’d like to title this track, it’s still profoundly idiotic to state that a woman can’t be taken seriously if she wears specific types of clothing. Moving forward, Freeman will be forced to do all future acting jobs sporting the fake decapitated head of Gwyneth Paltrow on top of his own head. After each take, he will ask the director, “Are you taking me seriously right now?”
The Lady Problem: Also at the Produced By conference was Paul Feig, a man in Hollywood who, somehow, respects and casts women and believes that they, too, are capable of aiming pretend weapons at pretend ghosts. Feig told the audience that the violent backlash against the forthcoming Ghostbusters reboot hasn't died down (unlike actual ghosts). "I have been hit with some of the worst misogynistic stuff," he said, clenching Morgan Freeman's balls tightly in one hand beneath the table. "The onslaught that came in was just so chilling. ... It’s my fourth film and we are struggling every day to go against that bias. We still get called in the press as a ‘chick flick.' We are always referred to as the all-female Ghostbusters. It’s just an uphill battle and I can’t believe we are having to deal with it."
Apparently, a few of the calls came from inside the house. "I had some male producer say, ‘Oh boy, get ready. It’s going to be tough, you’re going to have catfights.' And I said, ‘Who the fuck are you?' It was the most wonderful experience I’ve had," said Feig. "Guys have an image of women, and since guys make so many movies, their take on women goes into movies. That take on women is mainly mom, girlfriend ... they get their revenge through movies, you see it in these characters. It’s this self-perpetuating thing because very few people have been creating roles for women on the screen."
The Solution: We've known it all along, but we've finally got it in writing: Men get revenge on women who have wronged them by making movies in which women are stereotyped, belittled, marginalized, rendered one-dimensional or entirely nonexistent, raped, murdered, decapitated and shipped to their loved ones via FedEx, etc. The only solution to this is for women to get revenge for this revenge until everybody is so confused about who is taking revenge on whom that everyone just gives up and lives in a sort of dull but lovely peace, sitting on porches and playing with dogs and eating lots of soft cheese. Here's the plan, though, in the meantime: Women must continue fighting their way up the chain until, one day, we rule Hollywood and its interplanetary subsidiaries. Once we've got the reins, all men will henceforth be rendered in cinematic form as blurry piles of dildos. Actors will no longer be needed. Just dildos. We will add a cute little animated mouth to the pile of dildos in post-production.