The Warner Bros./Movies with Female Leads Debacle Continues

Oh boy, I bet Warner Bros’ Jeff Robinov is regretting that he ever woke up and put pen to paper when he (reportedly) put out the decree that Warner would no longer make movies with female leads in the aftermath of “The Brave One” and “The Invasion” stinking up the box office joint. Over at Deadline Hollywood, which initially leaked the news, noted woman’s rights lawyer Gloria Allred has weighed in, saying, “If that’s what he said, when movies with men as the lead fail, no one says we’ll stop making movies with men in the lead. This is an insult to all moviegoers and particularly women.”

Meanwhile, the publishers of TheMovieBlog, who actually got a reply from Warner themselves when they originally followed up on the story, continued to wax philosophical about the ramifications of such an action on Warner’s point, writing, “And when such wrongs occur, we have 2 choices. 1) Stand against it and let the offending party know we won’t accept such behavior. Or 2) We can just ask ‘Who Cares If Broads Don’t Get Leads?'”

Here’s the exchange between TMB and Warner:

WB Rep – “Mr. Robinov never made that statement, nor is it his policy.”

TMB – “So are you saying it is not now, nor will be Warner Bros. policy to stop producing films with female leads?”

WB Rep – “Correct. That is not our policy. A blogger (presumably Nikki Finke) made a statement without giving us the opportunity to first respond.”

TMB – “All right, that’s all I needed to know. Thank you for calling me.”

Back at the ranch, one of the big boys of the industry, Entertainment Weekly finally piped in, using a Variety article to take a shot at Warner Bros’ supposed dedication to movies with female leads.

In fact, Warners tells Variety, it has a bunch of female-centered projects in the pipeline, which the Variety article goes on to list. Look at the list yourself, though, and you’ll see a lot of opportunity to say “Yes, but…”

For one thing some of the projects look, on the surface, like attempts to recapture old fizz in new bottles — re-teaming Unfaithful’s Diane Lane and Richard Gere in a drama, and How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days’ Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey in a romantic comedy. Plus, Warners cites two upcoming superhero projects that both feature a group of male heroes and one heroine: Justice League and Watchmen (the latter directed by the guy who made 300, the manliest movie of the millennium). The studio also mentions women in supporting roles in upcoming movies (but supporting roles shouldn’t count as lead roles, should they?) and its ongoing efforts to mount a Wonder Woman movie; does Warners really want to boast of its inability to get that invisible plane off the ground after 10 years of trying?

Ooooh boy. Jeff Robinov should have slept in that morning when he wrote/told/said/thought those infamous words.

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