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Rated F: IMDb Promotes Female Filmmakers With A New Rating System

Wondering which movie to watch to mark International Women’s Day today? The Internet Movie Database can help with that. Their suggestions include Disney’s animated insta-classic Frozen, Andrea Arnold’s road trip drama American Honey, writer Thea Van Harbou’s Metropolis, or one of the other 21,800 movies to have recently received an F-rating by the site—F, standing for female, of course.

Sparked by cartoonist Alison Bechdel’s eponymous test, the new rating system, first adopted by the Bath Film Festival in 2014, was picked up by a number of other festivals before IMDb introduced it to their site, too. “The F-Rating is a great way to highlight women on screen and behind the camera,” says site founder and CEO Col Needham.

Bath’s festival director Holly Tarquini told the BBC what inspired her to incorporate the classification into their film program: “The F-Rating is intended to make people talk about the representation of women on and off screen,” said, adding “It’s exciting when new organizations decide to join us in shining a light both on the brilliant work women are doing in film and on how far the film industry lags behind most other industries, when it comes to providing equal opportunities to women. But our real goal is to reach the stage when the F-Rating is redundant because 50% of the stories we see on screen are told by and about film’s unfairly underrepresented half of the population—women.”

For now, you can use IMDb to check out movies directed or written by women or ones that centre on female characters and stories, like Moana, Freaky Friday, The Girl On The Train, and Pitch Perfect 2.

Happy International Women’s Day!

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