Women in Cinema: In retrospect, 2014 turned out to be another disappointing year for women in cinema, with the exception of some highlights. Female-led high-budget flicks like “Divergent,” “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1” and “Maleficent” did very well at the box office, while directors Angelina Jolie and Ava DuVernay‘s films, “Unbroken” and “Selma,” respectively, are accumulating Oscar buzz as awards season is already in full swing.
With a disproportionate number of women being represented in Hollywood, it’s no wonder some of the best female performances and best female directing of 2014 were in indie’s like “Begin Again,” “Under the Skin,” “Belle” and “Obvious Child.” While 2015 won’t solve the conspicuous gender gap, there are some films – blockbuster-promising, comedic and independent – to look forward to.
Here’s a list, in no particular order, of 20 of the 40 women-centric films – films either starring, written or directed by women – expected to be released sometime this year (as always, release dates are subject to change):
40. “Pitch Perfect 2”
Director: Elizabeth Banks
Writers: Kay Cannon, Mickey Rapkin (novel)
Starring: Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld, Elizabeth Banks, Brittany Snow
Synopsis: “Collegiate a capella group the Barden Bellas enter into an international competition that no American team has ever won,” IMDb.
The Dish: Whether you watched the film or not, there was no escaping Kendrick’s irresistibly-catchy rendition of the cup song, “When I’m Gone,” from the first film. Kendrick, along with the original cast returns for this sequel, this time with star Banks in the director’s chair, which will mark her first full-length feature directorial debut. Joining the cast will be “True Grit” star Steinfeld. Steinfeld’s career hasn’t taken off the way most expected after her Oscar nomination in 2011 and losing out to Jennifer Lawrence for the coveted “Hunger Games” gig. A titular performance in 2013s “Romeo & Juliet” and a good addition to the great ensemble cast in “Begin Again” has kept her name barely relevant, but it’ll take a memorable film to remind audiences of what this girl can do. Not to mention she’ll be showing off her singing chops. Maybe if she could get her own cup song…
Release date: May 15