According to a report released by San Diego State University, most original productions distributed by streaming platforms between 2019 and 2020 had women as the protagonists. The data, which are analyzed annually, are part of the Study of Women in Television and Cinema.
According to the researchers, about 42% of the productions available on streaming services in the United States have “clearly identifiable” female protagonists. It is almost twice as much compared to data from cable and open television.
The study investigated more than 4,100 characters from different programs, series and other productions. The analyzes also focused on checking the credits of all of them to know precisely how many women were part of the technical and creative teams.
Through these evaluations it was possible to conclude that the original productions launched directly in the streaming services were more likely to have female protagonists in the same measure as male protagonists. On these platforms, there are more creators, directors, screenwriters, producers and publishers than in other sectors of the audiovisual.
In 2018, there were only 15% of female directors, but that rate rose to 32% in 2020; the same happened in the area of photography direction, which went from 3% to 17% compared to the same period.
However, there is a long way to go, since the diversity in this area is still timid. The percentage of Latin characters, for example, fell from 6% to 5% this season, and that of black characters rose from 17% to 20%. More and more we will see these numbers change.
Through the report, it was also possible to identify that when a creative team has at least one woman involved, the characters have better developments. These figures, moreover, are more likely to have stories that go beyond familiar dramatic stereotypes.
It is worth mentioning that the new Oscar rules, which aim to add more diversity to the awards and opportunities for minorities, may help to further leverage these numbers in the coming years.
You can check the full report, in English, here.