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Women Making Films: A New Road Movie Through CInema

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Mark Cousins' upcoming 16-hour film project 'Women Making Films: A New Road Movie Through CInema' will preview the first four hours at the 75th Venice Film Festival in September 2018.
The episodic film will be 16 hours when completed in Spring 2019. The first four hours episodes are narrated by Tilda Swinton.
The complete film will be made up of forty “chapters” to be narrated by Tilda Swinton and other key women in cinema. Following in the footsteps of Mark Cousins’ 'The Story of Film: An Odyssey', giving a guided tour of the art and craft of the movies. Using almost a thousand film extracts from thirteen decades and five continents, Cousins asks how films are made, shot and edited; how stories are shaped and how movies depict life, love, politics, humour and death, all through the compelling lens of some of the world’s greatest directors – all of them women.
Agnes Varda and Jane Campion will be two of the great directors featured but scores of other filmmakers have used film in interesting ways - including filmmakers such as: Safi Faye in Senegal, Forough Farokzhad, Marva Nabili and Mania Akbari in Iran, Sumitra Peries in Sri Lanka, Angola’s Sarah Maldoror, Japan’s Kinuyo Tanaka, Ukraine’s Kira Muratova, Tunisia’s Moufida Tlatli, Bulgaria’s Binka Zhelyazkova, Lois Weber, Maya Deren, Angelina Jolie, Barbara Loden and others in the USA, Pirjo Honkasalo in Finland, Algeria’s Assja Djebar, Czechoslovakia’s Drahomira Viranova and Vera Chytilova, Cecile Tang and Anne Hui from Hong Kong and the UK’s Lynne Ramsay, Sally Potter, Wendy Towe, Antonia Bird and Clio Barnard.
“Many films about cinema feature mostly male directors – 'Women Directing Film' challenges that. It tries to change the canon. It’s not about the lives of these great directors, it’s about their work. It is a film school, where all the teachers are female. The intention of this film is to, as Diaghilev and Cocteau said, “astonish us.” To campaign for equality in cinema is compellingly right and part of that campaign must be to celebrate the great women directors from around the world and from every decade, to insert them into the canon where they rightly belong and from which they have been excluded by many film historians, mostly male.” (Mark Cousins)
“Cinema: the great empathy machine. The ultimate invitation to walk in other people’s shoes, to look through their eyes, follow their thoughts, make their connections. This is the radical project of cinema itself. It transforms - it liberates us as we watch. It makes us fit for evolution.” (Tilda Swinton)
Official Selection Venice Film Festival 2018 - Venice Classics - World premiere


Running Time
240 mins (complete version will be 960 mins)
Mark Cousins
John Archer
Executive Producer
Tilda Swinton


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Last updated 31st July 2018

Production Company

Dogwoof Hopscotch Films

Hopscotch Films
John Archer
Film City Glasgow
401 Govan Road
G51 2QJ
+44 (0)141 440 6740

19-23 Ironmonger Row
+44 (0)20 7253 6244


19-23 Ironmonger Row
+44 (0)20 7253 6244