Whose lens? Gender behind the camera in Pacific filmmaking

Polly Stupples
Maja Zonjic
Eliorah Malifa
Amber Kale
Ayeisha Motu

Filmmaking in the Pacific region is growing, with increasing numbers of films made in and about the region. Pacific filmmaking carries multiple forms of agency: it can redress colonial framings of the region, contribute to diversifying small island economies and support the diversity of cultural expression. However, little attention has been paid to gender in Pacific filmmaking. This article presents a quantitative gendered analysis of filmmakers in key behind-camera roles in films screened at the Pasifika Film Festival over three iterations of the festival. Our results indicate that while there are fewer women than men working as directors, scriptwriters, producers and cinematographers, those inequalities appear to be declining. However, more women work on short films and documentaries with smaller budgets, and fewer women have IMDb profiles. Further research could address gender diversity, intersectionality and the nuances of gendered agency in different filmmaking contexts.

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Research Type(s)
Journal Article
March 21, 2024
Published in
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