Wonder Woman put a stop to WWI in Wonder Woman, the Flossy Posse got Essence Fest started in Girls Trip, and the housewives of Monterey uncovered secrets lurking in their own beautiful, beachside mansions in Big Little Lies. It was the summer of 2017, and it seemed like Hollywood was finally catching onto something that, given the numbers, should have always been obvious: Women will show up in droves to watch movies and TV shows about complicated, captivating women.
Only a few months after this momentous summer for women-led projects, revelations of the widespread rot at the core of Hollywood made it clear why the cards were always stacked against women in entertainment, and partly why their projects were underserved. But have the resulting #MeToo and Time's Up movements — combined with the obvious numbers backing up the success of quality women-led projects — actually lead to more of these women-led projects being greenlit in the future?
"Speaking for my own slate, absolutely. All we do is create women-centred projects," Bruna Papandrea, the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning producer of Big Little Lies and founder of Made Up Stories, wrote in an email. "Based off of my own experience, it definitely feels like films are going to be telling more women’s stories. I know I would certainly, especially in television." Papandrea said this sentiment is shared among other other production studios. "They are actually soliciting not just stories by and about women, but with women leading the creative team," she elaborated.
With this in mind, we're taking a look at the women-directed projects slated to come out in 2019. Following a similar pattern to past successes, like Ocean's 8 and Wonder Woman, it seems we'll see a slew of sequels, reboots, and superhero movies directed by women. Hopefully, wholly original movies written and directed by women, like Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird, will join the slate, too.
Obviously, these projects — many of which are high-budget movies, showing studios' commitment to telling women's stories — are exciting. But given the long production process involved in films, we might have to wait a few years before the women-led projects currently being created to make it to our screens. At that point, we can fully judge whether Hollywood's reckoning led to a watershed moment in women-created art.
In the meantime, here's what to look out for in 2019.