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Documentary filmmakers

Number and proportion of male and female producers, directors and writers of Australian documentaries, 1988–2016

Next update May 2019


Currently active

Based on analysis of 957 documentaries shot over the past five years, there are 673 currently active producers in Australia, 504 directors and 448 writers.

Women account for 47 per cent of the producers, 35 per cent of the directors and 38 per cent of the writers.

Number and sex of filmmakers credited in various roles on Australian documentaries, 2011/12–2015/16.

Men Women Total no.
No. % No. %
Producers 343 51% 319 47% 673
Directors 323 64% 175 35% 504
Writers 270 60% 170 38% 448

Source: Screen Australia credit analysis of Australian documentaries shot between July 2011 and June 2016.

Notes:
Gender unknown for 25 people: 11 producers, six directors and eight writers.
Producers, writers and directors are deemed to be ‘currently active’ if they have been credited on at least one Australian documentary in the last five years.
Figures include credits for co-productions but exclude overseas productions made by Australian producers, directors and writers.
Percentages may not total exactly due to rounding.


Comparison over time

The proportion of female producers of Australian documentaries has risen each decade, from 39 per cent in the 1990s to 44 per cent in the 2000s and 47 per cent in the first seven years of the 2010s.

The proportion of female directors of Australian documentaries rose from 33 per cent in the 1990s to 37 per cent in the 2000s, however decreased slightly to 34 per cent in the first seven years of the 2010s. The total number of female directors of Australian documentaries fell between the 1990s and the 2000s, from 339 to 318.

The proportion of female writers of Australian documentaries has remained comparatively static, rising from 36 per cent in the 1990s to 37 per cent in the 2000s and to the current period. The total number of female writers of Australian documentaries fell between the 1990s and the 2000s, from 410 to 325.

Number and sex of filmmakers credited in various roles on Australian documentaries, 1990/91–2015/16

Men Women Total no.
No. % No. %
Producers
1990s 705 59% 464 39% 1,187
2000s 573 54% 469 44% 1,058
2010s (to 2015/16) 375 51% 346 47% 733
Since 1990 1,324 56% 993 42% 2,360
Directors
1990s 678 66% 339 33% 1,024
2000s 535 62% 318 37% 866
2010s (to 2015/16) 360 65% 187 34% 553
Since 1990 1,274 65% 673 34% 1,969
Writers
1990s 699 62% 410 36% 1,126
2000s 544 62% 325 37% 878
2010s (to 2015/16) 310 62% 183 37% 501
Since 1990 1,266 62% 752 37% 2,050

Source: Screen Australia credit analysis of Australian documentaries shot between July 1990 and June 2016.

Notes:
Gender unknown for 97 people: 43 producers, 22 directors and 32 writers.
Figures include credits for co-productions but exclude overseas productions made by Australian producers, directors and writers.
Each person counted once only by role and by decade.
Percentages may not total exactly due to rounding.

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