BYU’s Women in Film Club seeks to close gender gap in the film industry

BYU Women in Film Club president Lauren Allen practices directing actors doing a scene from “The Silver Linings Playbook.” Women in Film Club has restarted this Fall Semester. (Kaigan Bigler)

BYU’s Women in Film Club has restarted this Fall Semester after being disbanded due to COVID-19.

The club seeks to help women in film develop their skills and to close the gender gap in the film industry, and meetings consist of workshops where the attendees can expand on and learn new skills in their filming, producing and directing experiences.

At the most recent meeting, held Wednesday, Nov. 2, BYU theater professor Kristie Post Wallace offered the group advice on how to work with actors.

“Everybody is afraid,” she said. “Everybody. Own everything you do.”

Lauren Allen, a junior at BYU and president of the club, said she has worked mostly with men in her film experiences. She said the club wants to build confidence in women who want to be in the industry and they are trying to find ways women can be in leadership at every production level.

BYU theater professor Kristie Post Wallace has a sticker reading “the future of film is female,” on her laptop. Wallace offered advice on working with actors at the latest meeting of the Women in Film Club. (Kaigan Bigler)

A mission statement has not yet been developed because the club is so new, Allen said, but they have definitive goals.

“We want to be able to grow and develop so that our attitude toward each other and toward our gender is supportive and uplifted in a way that we can be able to tell the best stories and make what we feel like we’re led to do,” Allen said.

Theater and media arts professor Kimball Jensen said the club had a rough start a few years ago because of unsteady planning that was eventually interrupted by COVID-19.

Club Treasurer Anna Nate is grateful the club is starting up again and said it is a great networking opportunity.

“The goal is to make connections within the film program, not only with women. We don’t want there to be any more separations. We’re trying to make a space for women, and men can be in the conversation too,” Nate said.

They meet on Wednesdays at 11 a.m. in the West Campus Office and more information about the club can be found on their instagram page.

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