CineFam Launches Women Of Color Content Creator Database During Int’l Women’s Month

CineFAM, a Canadian not-for-profit initiative founded by award-winning filmmaker, Academy Director Member & CaribbeanTales Media Group founder, Frances-Anne Solomon, launched its new initiative, the Women of Color (WOC) Content Creator Database on March 1, 2022 to kick off International Women’s Month. This important database can be found on the CineFAM website

The goal of The Content Creator Database is to enhance the visibility of Women of Color in the Canadian film industry, directors, content creators, producers, screenplay writers, actress, animators, motion design, etc., in hopes of widening their networks and accessibility to larger resources. The database will consist of an abundance of women of color filmmakers and creators within the film industry.

The WOC initiative has already added 40+ Women of Color creators to its database. Some of the extraordinary women who are a part of the database are Emmy® Award Winning TV Host/Personality Patricia Jaggernauth, Award Winning Filmmaker & Academy Director Member Frances-Anne Solomon, award-winning writer, and producer Jennifer Holness, to name a few.

The Content Creator Database is still accepting applications. If you identify as a WOC filmmaker or creator, you are encouraged to fill out the application or if you know of someone who would benefit from this initiative, please forward them the details and application form.   

The Content Creator Database is just one of CineFAM’s initiatives that aim to build capacity and viability for women creators of color and provide multiple platforms for their work to be shown. The WOC initiative is one more step forward in that mission and is possible through a grant from The Canada Council Of The Arts, who contributes to the vibrancy of a creative and diverse arts and literary scene and supports its presence across Canada and around the world.

“This database is a step forward for WOC filmmakers’ voices to be heard and their work to be seen.  CineFAM’s mission is to promote and broaden the visibility of women of color in the film industry and provide paths to a larger network, we look forward to welcoming as many new filmmakers as possible,” said Frances-Anne Solomon in a press release.

Image via Cinefam Facebook page.

Initiatives like this can be a game-changer in terms of giving creators of color more opportunity, representation and visibility in a film industry that is slow to change, and still very white, male dominated, according to recent numbers.

study from UCLA’s social sciences division and the UCLA Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, authored by Dr. Darnell Hunt and Dr. Ana-Christina Ramón found that on screen, there has been a significant increase in characters and people of color, but behind the scenes it is a different story. The study, titled “Hollywood Diversity Report 2020: A Tale of Two Hollywoods,” looked at the top 200 theatrical releases in both 2018 and 2019.

In 2019, just 14.4% of directors of theatrical films were people of color. Women directors have seen some appreciable growth in the past decade, from 4.1% of all directors in 2011 to a record high of 15.1% in 2019. Women of color, however, were far less well represented, and as Hunt and Ramón state in the study, women as a whole “remained underrepresented by a factor of more than 3 to 1 in this employment arena in 2019.”

At this point, the industry being slow to change is hurting its bottom line, as the study also showed having a diverse cast makes a substantial impact at the box office. Films with a predominantly white cast posted the lowest median global grosses in 2019, whereas films with a cast between 41% to 50% people of color performed the best in 2019. Box office performance favored diversity internationally and domestically, as well: For eight of the top 10 highest grossing films worldwide in 2019, the majority of domestic audiences were not white.

So what does this mean for women of color filmmakers in Canada specifically? Your time is now. Sign up to the CineFam database. Step out and make your films, supported by a growing number of creatives who are beating down the door and changing the status quo.

Image via Cinefam Facebook page.

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