Suggestion: Networks Pass on Women-Led Pilots

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When the 2018 Upfronts happened many in the business where surprised by the pilots which weren't picked. Maybe of them had big stars and/or built-in audiences and were considered slam dunks, yet where still ignored in the end. Coincidentally all of them are led by women. Interesting, eh? Perhaps it's not so much of a coincidence...

Which of these recent pilots that weren't chosen to become series sounds the most interesting to you?

List: https://www.imdb.com/list/ls024763899
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Jen, Champion

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Posted 1 year ago

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Jeorj Euler

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I don't know. Quite frankly, I just want my astronaut mom to get a proper sendoff.

 
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Stephen N Russell

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Get Christie Love, Cagney & Lacey & have stars from orig Cagney & Lacey do cameo ( video feed, live walk on role).
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Dan Dassow, Champion

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My vote:
The Finest (2018 TV Movie)
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Jen, Champion

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groovyvic

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Sea Oak
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lapoubelle

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Love You More for all us pleasantly plump woman out there
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ElMo

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I trust your word Jen, but still, you really mean that these are all the pilots that weren't picked? And they all happen to be directed or led by women? 

I'm not saying it's hard to believe but I think there have been too many polemics these last years,related to genders, ethnicities, sexualities etc. and I try to be more optimistic and go beyond all the temptation of 'conspiracies' thoughts, like seeing some male agenda or anti-female bias from TV producers... as related to your example. I think there are many successful TV series with great female leads, or directed and written by women but the tone of your intro suggests that... the fight isn't over yet.

For me, it's a matter of the way you look at the glass, anyone who believes his gender or community or ethnicity or physical attribute (not many shows about short-overweight-plain-looking guys) is being  wronged by the media will find every sign indicating that it's true, and the same goes for the most optimistic side.

I think there's both an optimistic and pessimistic truth in everything, so how about looking at the one that makes us happier... maybe these things happened... maybe I'm being naive... maybe it's all a coincidence... I refuse to believe that all the people working on these networks and who terminated these shows were 100% men... and if a powerful executive woman found one of these shows unappealing, well, the way she exercised her power can also be regarded as a triumph of female decision-making... all women aren't blindly pro-women after all. And shouldn't be.

Cheers!
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groovyvic

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I mean I'm sure some of these shows got rejected because like half of them are police shows and there are already too many to begin with, but there are barriers to women in the entertainment industry, whether they're blatantly obvious or not. Take horror for example and try to name 5 females who have directed at least 2 horror movies and then try and think of 5 men who have done the same. I'm sure part of women not directing many horror movies is because they're less interested, but the gender gap in that genre is too extreme to be entirely because of different interests alone. Even then, the main reason that women would be less interested in horror is probably because people tell them it isn't ladylike and that girls shouldn't like that kind of stuff- which again are social factors related to being unequal. (I'm only giving horror as an example because I don't  know any directors of other genres)
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ElMo

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In "absolute" terms, I would agree with you Vic, but...

... I think everything is relative, time is, distance is, why shouldn't numbers? See, if there are ten female directors among 90 guys, okay, it's not good. But what if there were only twenty female candidates for 900 guys, that would mean 1 guy out of 10 got picked and 1 woman out of 2, it gives you a whole other view on the same reality.

Now, I guess the problem would be: why aren't there more women who want to be directors, maybe because there aren't many women who want to be directors... for the moment. And it's as simple as that. 

And what should be the solution anyway? Imagine a directing school for horror movies just opened and they only have 100 places, there are 1000 male applicants and 200 female, what would be the best option? selecting from the resume? or making it a 50-50 quota? what would be the fairest option? If the resume option leads to 99 women and 1 man, it'd be fine for me, but I have a feeling that the opposite solution would provoke allegations of anti-female bias... or plain subjectivity.

Seriously, I'm happy for anyone who succeeds in anything, I really am, and the more competitive or tough the field is, the stronger is my admiration but people should stop whining when things don't happen the way they wish it would or because there's not enough or this or not enough or that, that's what gives us millennials such a bad press. Well, i'm a '82, I don't know how much a millennial I am but I'm no Xer... and I used to whine a lot... till recently.

I understand works of art are the reflection of one's sensitivity or subjectivity, and some are more needed because they are less present for the moment.. but I'm pretty sure everything can be done without any polemics, complaints or quotas.
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groovyvic

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If you think the fact that there are only (not even) a handful of women who have ever directed more than one horror movie and that there are literally 0 well-known female horror directors is a small enough coincidence for it to just be a crazy random happenstance, then there really is no use in trying to convince you otherwise
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ElMo

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That's not exactly what I said... I'm only saying it's not a "men" vs. "women" thing, maybe i'm too naive for such a conception or maybe that's just too "binary" for my thinking. 
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groovyvic

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And I completely agree that people should be chosen solely on the quality of their work without accounting for gender in the decisions, & I'm one of the people who thinks feminists sometimes (usually) take it too far with their complaints.. but some things are a bit too different between genders for it to be a complete coincidence. Men & women aren't that different for their natural attractions toward certain genres to be so opposite by chance.  It's kind of like how people believed men were naturally way less emotional than women, but that difference in expression is moreso because of how genders are told they are expected to behave and what they should like rather than genetic differences (hormones might play a part too but it isn't the only thing).
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groovyvic

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Made my comment before I saw your most recent one but yeah my first comment was mostly in response to your comment disagreeing that 'the fight isn't over', when I think there are some changes still to be made
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ElMo

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My only "problem", for lack of a better word, with the feminist fight or the pro-women cause is that it puts men and women in separate categories, indirectly or unconsciously assuming (not saying it's deliberate) that any guy, on the sole basis of his gender, belongs to the "winning team", so to speak.

I know and you certainly know many male adults, regardless of their professional or artistic aspirations, who are struggling maybe more than women because of handicapping parameters (physical, social, ethnical...).

I worked in marketing and communication for ten years and I can tell you that in business or job forums, being a woman was an asset, also you can agree that to work for TV, looking good on TV is important, and if you look at 'heightism' on Wikipedia, you'll realize that guys with a short height are struggling more than tall ones while height is rarely an issue for women.

I'm not saying it's not "men vs. women" because it doesn't exist, but because reality works in complex ways, and we're all seeing the problems that touch us on a personal level, sometimes ignoring that other people can feel underestimated, ignored and/or wronged for various reasons, even men.
(Edited)
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groovyvic

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Definitely, I'm not trying to act all 'woe is me' about being female, just pointing out that there are differences. When you have no education, being a woman is an advantage in many ways. For example, working at restaurants I'd always get put as a waitress and would make about $30 an hour because of tips, whereas the men who had to work in the kitchen were just making minimum wage plus the .05% of my tips I had to give them. And I feel like looking good is a bit more important for women on TV than men (there are way more fat men on TV than women, as there is a market for fat funny guys like George Costanza), but at the same time height is definitely a bigger issue for men.  And of course there's the issue that men are taken way less seriously when making allegations of sexual assault than women, because it's assumed that men always want sex. I'm not trying to say women are victims or disadvantaged in every aspect of life, I'm just pointing out what I've noticed with regards to filmmaking specifically.
(Edited)
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Jeorj Euler

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The cause is unknown.
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ElMo

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I never thought you even implied that "woe is me" feeling, I think it's only my own experience speaking, not saying my overview of life is indicative of any objective reality but what I try to never judge the work of someone on a gender basis, except when gender, or something like the ethnic background or the spirituality, has brought a specific sensitivity to the subject...

What you said about horror movies was interesting, I was thinking maybe it has to do with the genre not appealing too much to women (most women I know are turned off by horror movies) but then maybe it's because that many tropes "popularized" by horror movies directed by huys and that contained a strong anti-female bias like the infamous 'damsels in distress', have a look at this, it might interest you:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8hj66FIFmw

and that was in the 80s.
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Nikolay Yeriomin (Mykola Yeromin), Champion

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I wonder whether Siskel and Ebert amnestied some of the 80's slasher movies after a string of modern "torture porn" type of movies. Also, as some people suggested in the comments, Friday the 13th (1980) is not a good example of that, as killer, despite initial man-like appearance turns out to be a woman. As far as I remember Ebert also bashed Maniac (1980) for being too violent despite he walked off the movie, effectively missing the point that Frank Zito's horrendous mental state was a result of child abuse. Movie was such a manifesto against child abuse on Joe Spinell's part that it's hard for me to imagine that it was viewed as an anti-feminist movie at the time. It's a pity Spinell never completed (mostly spiritual) sequel Maniac 2: Mr. Robbie (1986) because judging from what they filmed it could have made the point much more clear and precise, striking the right cord with the audience. 

Personally, I like slasher films and I don't think of them as hateful for any specific category (at least genre at a whole was not trying to do that, some particular movies might). The main appeal in the genre for me is a ping-pong like change of perspective back-and-forth between the killer and the victim. It provides for a very suspenseful and captivating perspective and, done right, it also shows that despite multiple advantages, killer often turns out to be either outsmarted and/or beaten by survivors. Killer in the slasher film is often a superhuman-like menace, an unstoppable force hitting a classic immovable object.  
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Jeorj Euler

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Hi, ElM. Do you have an suggestions for how the list subject heading or list description should be reworded?
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Jen, Champion

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Elm,

The problem is far worse in the States than it is in other countries. And, yes, those weren't ALL of the pilots not picked up, but they were a large percentage. 

I do my research - I'm not just making this stuff up.

And as far as the plain-looking or short or overweight guys not getting their own shows, here you go:
The World According to Jim
Last Man Standing
Kevin Can Wait
The Big Bang Theory
Still Standing
Modern Family
Bob Newhart Show
Grounded for Life
The Honeymooners
George Lopez
Get Smart
That '70s Show
Just the Ten of Us
Curb Your Enthusiasm
The Drew Carey Show
The King of Queens
The Jeffersons
My Name is Earl
NewsRadio
3rd Rock from the Sun
Just Shoot Me
Yes Dear

And those are just the sitcoms off the top of my head.
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ElMo

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They're all comedies, so they have the right look ...

You won't see a Jack Bauer looking like George Constanza, even when it's not comedies, they always play neurotic / loser-type of guys. And you won't see these guys topping the list of most bankable stars... not that it's a crime :)

By the way, I wasn't specific about TV; just in general, either you have or you don't have the "Givenchy" look.
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Jen, Champion

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Mohit Mago

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rampant misogyny
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ElMo

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With all due respect, I think that's too bold and simplistic a statement, there's something rotten in the business, definitely, but that case is not an illustration of how women really get it bad.

Why should anyone's interest toward a series or a story depend on the lead protagonists gender anyway? Not saying misogyny doesn't exist in general, it exits everywhere so unfortunately, media are no exception but this series' thing is a false trial... we don't know why these series were rejected and if a pilot was made in the first place, it still means that the concept was given a shot.

For me "misogyny" is such an ugly thing, it's really about hating women, plain and simple, which is a serious issue... so you can't just trivialize it by associating it to any situation or news item that only consists on raising a valid but still uncertain question. Same goes with "racism", "abuse" and other ugly words...
(Edited)
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Jeorj Euler

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I also fail to see how the people behind the decisions were or are misogynists.