Blockers director Kay Cannon says young women are “starving to see themselves on film”
No doubt about, there’s still a ways to go where female representation in film is concerned, especially the representation of strong, independent, liberated young women. But thankfully, films like Blockers — which tells the story of three parents attempting to stop their forces to be reckoned with for daughters from losing their virginity on prom night — are leading the way.
Speaking with HelloGiggles, Blockers director Kay Cannon revealed why it’s *so important* to feature women, and young women in particular, owning their sexuality right now, in the #MeToo and Time’s Up era.
"I think that young women in particular are starving to see themselves on film, and see themselves as they really are — and not like this sort of movie version characters of who they are, and I think it's about time that we're seeing this," said Cannon, a first-time director whose writing credits include the Pitch Perfect series, Girlboss, New Girl, and 30 Rock.
She added, “Why aren’t we? We make up half of society. Young women, women, we all have the same wants, desires, everything as a man does. We have a voice and we should be heard, and I think this is one way to do it. And we’re doing it through comedy, which makes it even better.”
How so? For Cannon, laughter is a unifier that enables conversation.
"I think it's an easier way to change people's minds that are pretty strong about their traditional beliefs, or whatever they actually do believe, is to get them laughing," Cannon went on. "You get somebody laughing, you get them to bend their thoughts and open up communication, have a conversation."
“I didn’t want the movie to come off preachy,” she continued. “There are elements in it, but based off of a character’s point of view; like Marcie [Sarayu Blue], for example. But the best way to break down any kind of barriers is to laugh.”
The young, female leads of Blockers — Kathryn Newton (Julie), Geraldine Viswanathan (Kayla), and Gideon Adlon (Sam) — echoed.
They felt similarly about young female representation, and really related to the movie.
"It felt really normal," Newton, for example, told HG. "I felt like I was playing a really good character. It doesn't happen a lot at our age. It's a coming of age story and dealing with your parents and dealing with your friends. That's what I loved."
"And now people are watching it, and it's created this movement I don't think we intended. I think we were all just telling a really normal story. Or, I felt like it was normal. I felt like [these] are conversations I have with my friends. "
Speaking as a young(ish) female, I can wholeheartedly say #same. And I’m sure many others would, too. So, we’re all in agreement, then? Better representation for young women in film? Great! In the meantime, you can show your support for Blockers tomorrow, April 6th, when it lands in theaters.