An Open Letter from Jon Avnet and Rodrigo Garcia
When it comes to women in Hollywood, the statistics aren’t pretty. Women may be 51% of the population but they are an appalling minority when it comes to serving as directors or showrunners. In 2014, only 19 percent of the top shows had female showrunners and only 2 percent of the films were directed by women.
At Indigenous Media, we believe that diversity is crucial to good storytelling and we have always believed that enabling women to get their voices heard is also good business.
That’s why we are teaming up with some of the most successful women in the industry to launch an incubator aimed at producing dramatic television series written and directed by women.
Our team of mentors includes Lesli Linka Glatter (Homeland), Kasi Lemmons (Eve's Bayou), Sarah Treem (The Affair), Betty Thomas (Private Parts) and Mimi Leder (The Leftovers).
Indigenous Media will pair five female storytellers with established mentors. Each mentor will guide and encourage each new voice through the process of creating and bringing her project to life. For each pair, Indigenous Media will finance a short pilot, with the potential to produce and fund a full-length version.
This is just the first step in bringing diversity back to storytelling. As we grow, so will the opportunities for new and undiscovered talent.
- Jon Avnet and Rodrigo Garcia -
Kasi Lemmons is an actor and film director. In 1997, she wrote and directed her first feature film, Eve's Bayou, for which she won an Independent Spirit Award for Best First Feature as well an award for Outstanding Directorial Debut from the National Board of Review. Some of her other credits include The Caveman's Valentine, Talk to Me and Black Nativity.
Betty Thomas is an Emmy-winning director and producer. Her film credits include The Brady Bunch Movie, 28 Days and Dr. Dolittle. She's currently finishing an Untitled Pilot for Disney.
Lesli Linka Glatter
Lesli Linka Glatter is a DGA Award winning, Oscar and Emmy-nominated director of film and premium television drama series. Lesli began her directing career through AFI's Directing Workshop for Women. Some of her most recent credits include Executive Producer/Director of Homeland and director of The Newsroom, The Walking Dead, Justified, Ray Donovan and Masters of Sex.
Sarah Treem is a television creator-writer-producer and playwright known for incorporating many female roles into her work. Along with writing and producing for HBO's In Treatment and Netflix's House of Cards, Sarah is the creator, writer and executive producer for the Golden Globe-winning Showtime hit The Affair.