In the captivating world of cinema, a concerning trend persists: the low representation of strong leading women both on screen and in roles behind the camera. Despite strides in gender equality, female filmmakers still face significant hurdles entering the industry.

Societal norms and institutional biases perpetuate the stereotype that filmmaking is a male-dominated field. This discourages aspiring female filmmakers and limits their opportunities. Moreover, the industry’s reliance on established networks and nepotism further excludes women.

The consequences are profound. When women are sidelined, storytelling suffers, and diverse perspectives are marginalized. However, there’s hope. Step forward Lily Portman. Lily visited me for a coffee in the Mayor’s Parlour to tell me about her project to make a short comedy horror film called Brave Birds. Unfamiliar with the genre? Perhaps think Shaun Of The Dead but a whole lot more edgy that in her words is ‘a truly ridiculous horror comedy that tackles misogyny and feathers!’

The film industry is a massive part of the world economy. The UK has some great London centric film businesses, but the West Midlands film industry is still relatively small so it’s little wonder that people like Lily are still punching up to get through that glass ceiling. The creative film industry is important intrinsically for art’s sake but it’s also a massive business opportunity for some of our young local Worcester residents. It would be great to see Lily, currently crowdfunding money, make her director debut become a reality. For more information see her website:


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