St. John's Summit on Women in Media

The 25th annual St John’s International Women’s Film Festival and Women in View to host St. John’s Summit on Women in Media

September 2, 2014, St. John’s – As part of its 25th anniversary celebrations, The St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival is launching the St. John’s Summit on Women in Media. Co-hosted by the SJIWFF and Women in View, and with support from William F. White International, the Summit will bring together delegates from Canada's major organizations representing women in screen media. Being the first national gathering of women's media organizations from Newfoundland to Vancouver, the Summit will provide delegates with the opportunity to share critical information about and resources from the communities they represent. Participants will develop collective strategies and policies to address gender disparity in Canada's screen industries.

Among the organizations attending The Summit are Women in Film and Television chapters from Vancouver, Halifax and Toronto; Quebec's Réalisatrices Équitables; Women in the Director's Chair and CUES (Canadian Unions for Equality on Screen). The Summit takes place on Tuesday, October 14, the opening day of the Festival. A public panel and press conference will be held the next afternoon.

The Celluloid Ceiling report, released each year by Professor Martha Lauzen, Executive Director of the Centre for the Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State University, shows that in North America’s top-grossing films, only 16 per cent of directors, writers and producers are women. The number of women holding key crew positions in these films, such as editors and cinematographers, is just as low. Statistics from last year’s major Canadian films reveal similarly disappointing numbers, with women accounting for just 22 per cent of directors and 20 per cent of writers.

"Gender imbalance is being discussed at major events all over the world this year," says Noreen Golfman, Chair of the SJIWFF Board of Directors. "The St. John's Summit is the first opportunity in Canada for women's media groups to discuss this topic and we are delighted that the SJIWFF is hosting this historic meeting as part of our 25th Anniversary celebrations."

"Gender imbalance in the media is not just about how many women get jobs in the industry; it’s also about what images of women end up on the screen and how that affects our perception of the world,” according to Rina Fraticelli, Executive Director of Women in View. "Having women present behind the camera, especially as writers and directors, brings about significant change in who and what we see onscreen. It’s a two-birds-with-one-stone solution to both urgent problems.”

For more information, please contact Eilish Mc Brearty, Communications & Educational Coordinator Office: (709) 754 3141 |

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