Five of the biggest titles set for release next year — including all four major superhero movies — will be directed by women: Birds of Prey by Cathy Yan, on Feb. 7; Mulan by Niki Caro, on March 27; Black Widow by Cate Shortland, on May 1; Wonder Woman 1984 by Patty Jenkins, on June 5; and Eternals by Chloé Zhao, on Nov. 6. It’s also worth noting that all but one of these five films are headlined by women. Eternals features several major women characters played by Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek and Gemma Chan.
Films directed by women in 2019 account for roughly $1.23 billion in domestic grosses and $2.79 billion in global grosses for the year. In 2020, just those five aforementioned movies could put shame to 2019’s numbers, especially worldwide. Even if one or two of those films under perform, collectively these five filmmakers stand to have a rippling effect throughout the industry, from a greater breadth of opportunity for women in both above and below-the-line positions to better recognition of women filmmakers during awards season.
Certainly, credit is due to Disney and Warner Bros. for stepping up and handing these crown jewel franchises to women.