Responding to the release of appalling international statistics, members of DEGNZ and WIFT gathered in Auckland on Monday night last week to talk about gender imbalance in the NZ screen industry. Broadcaster Kim Hill moderated a lively discussion with panelists Gaylene Preston, Annie Goldson, Cushla Dillon and Jackie van Beek, who had varying views on how the situation had arisen and what could be done about it.
The statistics are not readily available for television but are clear for film: in New Zealand 17% of dramatic features, with NZFC investment, are directed by women. Women are making fewer applications and are accessing a smaller proportion of public funding than is appropriate for their population. There was a call at Monday’s event for positive discrimination to address this.
DEGNZ is now in discussions with NZFC and NZ On Air, to analyse the data available and look at useful ways to move the discussion forward.