25 Greatest Working Film Directors (Who Also Happen to be Female)

Entertainment Weekly loves their lists just as much as we do. Most of the time, they get most of their choices right (or right enough). But their new list of the 25 Greatest Working Film Directors left a lot to be desired, especially considering they had only one female director and it also happened to be the only one that has ever won an Oscar: Kathryn Bigelow.

Surely winning an Academy Award cannot be the only criteria for being a “great” director, and there are several working women in the film industry. To us, great means creating films with substance, integrity and a talent for all facets of filmmaking, from the cinematography to the casting, to the added bonuses of being well-reviewed and award-winning.

In no particular order, we have compiled our own list of 25 Greatest Working Film Directors (Who Also Happen to be Female).

Patricia Rozema

The out Canadian director was behind the lesbian-themed films I’ve Heard the Mermaids Singing and When Night is Falling, but has since moved on to bigger-budget mainstream works like Mansfield Park and Kit Kittredge: An American Girl. She also won several awards for her writing work on HBO’s Grey Gardens, starring Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange. You can see her as a talking head this month in Unauthorized: The Harvey Weinstein Project.

Jamie Babbit

In between films like But I’m a Cheerleader, The Quiet and Itty Bitty Titty Committee, Jamie keeps busy directing episodes of shows like United States of Tara and Pretty Little Liars. Next up: Breaking the Girl, a thriller written by Guinevere Turner.

Kimberly Peirce

Her first feature film was Boys Don’t Cry, which means she had a ton of pressure on her to perform thereafter. She followed up with Stop Loss (starring Ryan Phillipe and Joseph-Gordon Levitt and was just announced as the director of Universal Pictures’ The Knife.

Miranda July

The bisexual filmmaker/artist wowed viewers with her indie debut Me and You and Everyone We Know, and it seems that her follow-up, The Future, should be just as pleasing and eccentric. It recently debuted at Sundance, and was instantly purchased for distribution by The Match Factory.

Donna Deitch

The legendary director of Desert Hearts has been lending her talents to TV shows like Off the Map and Law & Order: SVU, but she is still working on the sequel to her pivotal lesbian film.

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