A Profile of Niki Caro

Whale Rider to Mulan – A Profile of Niki Caro New Zealand-born Niki Caro caught the world’s attention in 2002 with her first major film, Whale Rider. The film tells the story of a Maori girl who defies her grandfather in her quest to become the next leader of her village, a role traditionally reserved …

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Chloe Zhao – A Profile

Chloe Zhao – A Profile By Claire Graman I have a dark secret I never discuss in polite company: I don’t like superhero films. However, I’m looking forward to Marvel’s upcoming film Eternals, and it’s all because of its amazing director: Chloe Zhao. Chloe Zhao (Zhao Ting), born in Beijing, China in 1982, attended high …

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Edith Head

Clothes Make the (Wo)man: Three Incredible Costume Designers and Their Mark on Film

By Claire Graman Whenever I teach a film class, I make sure to question students’ ideas of what a filmmaker is. We’re all familiar with auteur theory – the idea that the director controls what the film looks like. And there’s an element of truth to that. Directors oversee everything, and they have the final …

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Takuzo Sakane, Japanese woman filmmaker

Japanese Filmmaker Tazuko Sakane

  A Profile of Japanese Filmmaker Tazuko Sakane By Claire Graman I love Japanese film, from Akira Kurosawa’s samurai dramas to Satoshi Kon’s mind-bending anime. One of the earliest Japanese films, A Page of Madness (1926), a silent film with no intertitles, blew my mind when I saw it in college. Even cult classics like …

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Maya Deren

A Lesson from Maya Deren

By Claire Graman The quarantine has affected filmmaking. For aspiring filmmakers, as well as established ones, times are bleak. With stalled productions and delayed releases, cinema seems the most fragile it’s ever been. Particularly when you’re stuck at home, the idea of making a film is daunting. Yet constraints can often spark creativity. One of …

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Filmmaker Julie Dash

Julie Dash – A Profile

Julie Dash – A Profile By Claire Graman I recently read an excellent article on the lack of black directors represented in the Criterion Collection. I was saddened, but not surprised. What did surprise me was that even among a paltry number of black directors, Julie Dash wasn’t represented. If any director deserves to be …

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10 Feminist Anime for Teen Girls

10 Feminist Anime for Teen Girls

By Claire Graman These 10 Feminist Anime for Teen Girls were chosen for focusing on girls and women and their struggles. While there still may be some problematic aspects, for the most part these shows critique gender roles and present strong heroines you can root for. Most entries on this list were also written and/or …

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Feminist media

Teaching Feminist Media: A Perspective

Teaching Feminist Media: A Perspective By Claire Graman, Girls’ Voices Matter instructor Bertie the Brain, Video Games and Ada Lovelace: Teaching Feminist Media I wasn’t sure what to expect when I began teaching a class about feminist media and video games. The gaming industry has been notoriously hostile to women and girls at all levels, …

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