‘Bangalore Days‘. ‘Moothon‘. ‘Koode‘. ‘Liar’s Dice‘. What do these brilliant films have in common? They were directed by two up-and-coming Malayalam women film directors. Of course, two of the films mentioned are over five years old, so calling these two directors up-and-coming is quite disrespectful. And indeed, it is, but these two directors have only directed two films each in the past decade (they have done other works, but have not been The Director in those films and the rest have been short films). Why? Do filmmakers and producers not trust these women to handle their projects? What’s with this disparity?
Filmmaking has always been a man-run machine. This is true for most industries in the past and now (apparently). Of course, there have been some exceptions in a few cases like the actors’ department (not much) and the costume and clothing departments (even lesser), but the fact remains, women are still scarce in this men-run mammoth of an industry. And this is especially true for directors, who helm movies.
The number of women directors have always been low in all parts of the world, but it has been worse in the multiple and diverse Indian regional film production companies who have all been “non-diverse” about the number of women they have been hiring. The Malayalam film industry has also been the same and we can count the number of notable female directors in the South-Indian film industry on one hand (we wish we were exaggerating).
Malayalam actresses such as Revati and Sheela turned to directing after their “Prime age” for playing leading roles started to dry up (another double standard still existing today) and they did find some success over various film industries. But no women have reached the heights of financial success their films achieved like Geethu and Anjali. And the fact that they are not getting any more projects is a shame.
If you look at their successful films, they have proven that they can work on diverse scripts and can change up their directing style to match the tone of their films. Maybe they like working only on their own scripts, but that still begs the question – why are there no potential financial backers for them? They have proved, through their films that they are very capable directors and are changing the Malayalam film landscape as we speak.
Geethu Mohandas and Anjali Menon have started a revolution which we expect more and more women (and men) to join up. They have made good scripts into better films and they are proving their doubters wrong. We hope to see more films directed by these two and hopefully will inspire the next generation of directors, regardless of gender.
We’re hiring meme-makers!
Crazy humour, creativity, unique meme-making skills and a finger on the pulse of the entertainment industry – if you’ve got all of these, then you’re what we want. Send your application and a sample of your work to [email protected] right away
Important: Only applications accompanied with sample memes will be considered.