About a week ago, we launched our first crowd funding campaign for the short film NO TRACE: Miranda Directs. Since then, we’ve hit 20% of our goal, and climbing. A huge jump over just one week of being online, and we couldn’t be more excited about it. We’ve also cast our lead male – James Kyson, who played Ando on HEROES.
It’s an exciting time for us, and I personally couldn’t be more thrilled to be prepping to get back behind the camera again. But, of course, as with most crowdfunding campaigns, the big question is: why? Why now? Why this project?
So, I thought it was a good time to give some answers to those pressing – and intelligent – questions.
As you’re likely aware if you’re reading this, the statistics for women behind the camera in Hollywood are pretty dismal. Women directors tend to make up between 4 and 6% of studio feature film directors each year. It can be disheartening to see those kinds of numbers, especially if, like me, you’ve wanted to direct your whole life.
Additionally, of those who do direct, there isn’t a great deal of variance in genre opportunities. If you’re really into gory horror, you’re going to have a difficult time finding a female director to look up to in the studio world – despite the fact that there are hundreds working in the indie sphere. If you’re into comedy (or romance), it’ll be a bit easier, but there are still a number of genres that women haven’t been welcomed into in a big way: superhero films, horror, bro/buddy movies, thriller, sci-fi, fantasy, and action are all areas where doors have been shut to women for years.
As a female director, action has always been my passion. I’ve studied karate, arnis, and tae kwon do myself for years, and couldn’t imagine a better way to spend my time exercising and engaging my mind.
And, I’m often the first in line for action movies – no matter their Rotten Tomatoes rating. Whether we’re talking about Ong-Bak, Chocolate, District B-13, Die Hard, The Raid: Redemption, Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation, or some of the more fun (if underrated) recent films like San Andreas or Olympus Has Fallen, I’ve seen them – and loved them – all.
I want to make that kind of bone-crunching, jaw-dropping, high-octane action. And there’s only one thing standing in my way: proof of concept.
In Hollywood, if you have an idea, even and especially in the studio side of things, you have to come in with a pitch. That pitch can be visual or text-based, but as a director, it helps if it’s visual. That means bringing something to the table to prove that you can execute the script they’ve given you. And I need to prove that I can execute that level of intense action, to walk in the footsteps of Kathryn Bigelow, Patty Jenkins, and Lexi Alexander. To demonstrate that I can do it – I have to prove that I can do it.
I’ve always believed in diversity in front of and behind the camera, and intend to do everything I can to bring together a diverse team in both areas.
At the moment, I have a fantastic crew, including Director of Photography Derek Bauer, who likes to talk to me about creative drone shots and ways to pay homage to Jessica Jones’ shooting style over coffee, and many others who are to be announced in the coming days and months. With this team beside me, I have no doubts about succeeding, both on the festival circuit and in Hollywood.
Which is where you come in. With your pledge of support – through sharing on social media, telling your friends and family, shouting it from the rooftops – hell, taking out a billboard on Sunset Blvd – whatever you can do to help will take this project to the next level and give us the ability to not just make an excellent piece of work, but change the statistics – hopefully forever – and answer the why – why this project, why me, why now? Because we have to. Because we can’t give up. Because, together, we can be the change that Hollywood needs.