June 13, 2016

Female Action Directors

Greetings readers of The Action Elite. The one hundred million dollar budget ‘Wonder Woman’ in 2017 marks the very first time a female director has been in charge of a budget this large.

‘Wonder Woman’ Director Patty Jenkins is a relative unknown (to the action genre at least), basically doing a few TV pilots and a TV movie.

With the increasing rise of female action stars in films, and those jumping from the pages of comic books to the screen, this is a welcome change.


When Kathy Bigelow helmed ‘The Hurt Locker’ in 2008, many thought that after her best director nod, over her ex James Cameron, that this singular event would launch her and other female directors into the forefront of the film world. Sadly it did not. Her film ‘K-19 The Widowmaker’ did come close to reaching the 100 million dollar threshold, but obviously the box office business was less than stellar and, since 2002 Bigelow has mainly been involved in lower budget fair; even ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ came in at 40 million, on the lower end of the major theatrical releases.

That is not to say that there are female directors out there, it is just they have not had the opportunity to shine. If even the top ones cannot command a huge budget film, it is obvious that this trickles down to the rest of the industry.

The one really cool thing now is the rise of streaming media and new media for content delivery. Even a TV show such as ‘The 100’ is driven strongly by female characters, a female writer (Kass Morgan) and female producer (Kira Snider). Many of these shows however have multiple hands and minds involved, thus, the notion of a female run TV show still remains elusive.

Of course power players such as Angelina Jolie have tried their hand at directing, for Jolie, the 10 million dollar ‘By The Sea’ is seen as a huge flop, barely making 500,000 in the box office. Again this seems to push back the notion that a woman can be handed a massive budget and be successful.

Director’s Lou Simon and Tara Cardinal have put out a couple of cool independent feature films, and worth noting, they have collaborated together on ‘Agoraphobia’. Lou Simon is currently filming her latest movie ‘Lou Simon’s 3’


Coming in on the ultra low budget, independent action end of cinema, many female directors and producers opt for short films as their path to eventual greener pastures. Director/Producer/Writer Kellie Madison, recently released ‘The Gate’ starring Amy Johnston, and has a feature film script ready to go. Producer/Director/Writer Toy Lei has just released ‘Boxer’ and it is a selection in the San Diego Comicon International Film Festival Thursday July 21st, 2016 at 12:05 pm. Director/Producer/Writer PeiPei Alena Yuan has released ‘Yoga Pant Brawl’, a fun and energetic look at the catty behavior women often exhibit towards one another.


The take away here is to make an effort to support female directors, writers, and producers. They are doing the exact same thing as their male counterparts, but for far less money, and for the most part much less recognition.

One cool thing is a film festival called Etheria this is a showcase fest specifically for female directors and took place June 11th. This event hopefully will spawn more female centrist film festivals allowing for the ladies to have a spotlight and a forum to showcase their work.

For further information on ‘The Gate’ go to

For further information on ‘Boxer’ go to

For further information on ‘Yoga Pant Brawl’ go to

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About the Author

Dan Templegod
Dan Templegod
I have written for more than a half dozen movie and music magazines. Zazz, Jam, The Wild Rag, Revelations, Sirens Of Cinema, Tampa Bay Spike, and Vengeance. All have ceased to exist, welcome to the age of the internet!! I currently write for Dan's Movie Report



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