Jessica Jones (right, Krysten Ritter) and Trish Walker (Rachael Taylor) go out in search of gender parity.Image: Netflix
Marvel’s Jessica Jones made television history when it announced that all 13 episodes of season two would be helmed by female directors. Now, just in time for Women’s History Month, a new featurette is shining a spotlight on all the women working together to bring this iconic series to Netflix once again.
The video, appropriately called “Empowered,” features stars Krysten Ritter, Carrie-Anne Moss, and Rachael Taylor, along with showrunner Melissa Rosenberg, talking about their experiences working on a show that not only handles serious issues like sexual assault and trauma with nuance and depth, but is also paving the way for more female inclusion behind-the-scenes – not only as directors, but as cinematographers, editors, writers, and other key roles.
Even as notable directors like Ava DuVernay and Patty Jenkins have seen more success in Hollywood, there’s still a disparaging gender gap in TV and film production (a gap that’s higher for women of colour, trans women, and gender nonconforming people, among others). According to the Center for the Study of Women in Television & Film at San Diego State University, women only made up 18 per cent of all key behind-the-scenes roles on films in 2017. Similar roles on TV shows in the 2016 to 2017 season were only 28 per cent women.
It’s great to see shows like Jessica Jones and DuVernay’s Queen Sugar make more of an effort to not only feature women in compelling stories, but also have women behind the scenes shaping and framing those narratives. Jessica Jones returns for season two on March 8, which also happens to be International Women’s Day.