"Lemonade" by Beyoncé and the Handmaid's Tale don't exist within the same universe (though perhaps the "Lemonade" film takes place in the lead-up to the Gilead revolution), but it turns out they share a surprising bond: both were directed by an extremely talented female director named Reed Morano, 40.
Or at least, she shot the video for "Sandcastles". "I shot one music video on Lemonade. There are a million great cinematographers on that job. I just want to say that out loud. So, for anyone else who asks me, "Did you shoot Lemonade?" No, I shot [the video for] "Sandcastles," she humbly clarifies in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, as though that takes away from her envious Beyoncé proximity. Morano's work on "Lemonade" led to her directing role for the first three episodes of the Handmaid's Tale.
"I know what it's like when you go on a show: You leave after the pilot, and then the style changes. I wanted my style to be embedded," she declares, about her imprint on the show. It was a huge responsibility to craft the complex, macabre world of Gilead, but her leadership was felt in everything from the color tones to the costumes. Morano has a background in cinemetography, and shot the show as though it was a movie: " [showrunner Bruce Miller] was like, "No, no, no, you can still shoot it as if there are no commercials," which is what I did. Him telling me to ignore that was probably the best advice I could have received, and I treated it like a movie."
The film and television industry faces a severe dearth of female directors. It's a problem we've noticed here at Refinery29. There's so many highly capable women using film to tell painful, beautiful, sobering, and deeply human stories. Morano is aware that she's a minority in the industry, and muses about being a fad: "If you make something that's subversive and really draws attention, no matter who you are, they're going to push you along. But it's helpful that I'm a woman because that's the cool thing now — to have a woman director. All of a sudden, it's trendy. I'm trendy!"
We know that woman are the future of film and TV, and with women like Morano leading the way, we can't wait to see our representation through visibility.
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