Turner Classic Movies has joined up with the non-profit Women in Film on a multi-year partnership aimed at raising awareness concerning the lack of gender equality in the film business and to celebrate the achievements of women in film.
Beginning in the fall of this year, TCM will kick off a three-year commitment each October with an on-air programming initiative created to raise awareness about the historical contributions of women working behind the camera, shining a spotlight on the current lack of women in positions of power in the film business, and promoting resources that empower them to more fully participate in the industry.
In an interview, TCM vice president of brand activations and partnerships Genevieve McGillicuddy said the initiative will run for the entire month of October on TCM and will highlight women in the industry from the early pioneers up to the present day. The specific women and films to be highlighted will be announced closer to the October premier date.
McGillicuddy said TCM had highlighted women directors in the past, but this is the first time the network has done something with a partner on this scale.
“The timing seemed right,” McGillicuddy said, adding that the partnership allows TCM to “bring context to the programming in terms of what TCM does, [and] join forces with Women in Film to highlight what is out there in the zeitgeist right now in terms of women in film and the challenges we face in the industry today.”
Women in Film Los Angeles will also partner with TCM throughout this programming initiative to offer research and resources that illuminate the current roles women play in the film industry and promote tools to assist women filmmakers in furthering their careers and the art form.
“The issue of gender inequality in the film industry is both timely and immensely important to shine a light on, and through this programming effort TCM is proactively taking a deeper look at the role of women in our industry as well as providing insight and resources to inspire more women filmmakers,” said TCM general manager Jennifer Dorian in a statement. “We’re thrilled to partner with such a well-respected organization as Women in Film in order to address and promote the empowerment of women in our industry.”
Women in Film is a non-profit organization founded in 1973 and dedicated to promoting equal opportunities for women, encouraging creative projects by women, and expanding and enhancing portrayals of women in all forms of global media. Given that women comprise 50% of the population, WIF’s ultimate goal is to see the same gender parity reflected on and off screen. WIF focuses on advocacy and education, provides scholarships, grants and film finishing funds and works to preserve the legacies of all women working in the entertainment community.
“Women In Film is honored to have TCM as our partner,” said WIF President, Cathy Schulman in a statement. “For years, I have dreamed of having a network reach out to our organization with a true interest in our advocacy and the ability to collaborate on programming that will reach audiences everywhere. Now, thanks to TCM, that dream is real.”