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Cannes Lions 2015
Jefferson Hack in conversation with Samantha Morton at Cannes Lions 2015

Actress Samantha Morton in conversation with Jefferson Hack

The Dazed founder interviewed the British actress slash director to talk about gender inequality facing female directors

"Back in the day some of the most powerful people in film were women". These are the words of British actress and director, Samantha Morton as she and Jefferson Hack discussed the need for a new system of financial support for first and second time feature filmmakers, further amplifying the Dazed Female Firsts initiative, founded in 2014. 

Only seven per cent of 2014's 250 top films were directed by women – that's just simply not good enough. That's why Dazed is bringing the world the Female Firsts: Film Fund, a project that invites brands to support female feature film directors and help them break down barriers in modern cinema.

Today, Dazed founder Jefferson Hack met Samantha Morton at Cannes Lions 2015 for a conversation centred around the lack of voice afforded to female directors in film. Dazed and Morton are going to be the change rather than just talk about it, but here's what we learned from her today.


"Women film makers need the opportunity to hone their craft and become masters just as countless male heavyweights of cinema have. Lynne Ramsey or Kathryn Bigelow are only the beginning".

"It wasn't always like this. The golden era of cinema was dominated by female talent (screenwriters in particular)".

"Early in my career I was exposed to scenarios and projects with brilliant female talent in shows such as Band Of Gold. I learned from these people, who were celebrated at the time, but this environment has declined and it needs to be revived."

"The female voice in cinema needs to be allowed to get celebrate getting better with age".

"Man or woman filmmaker, to make a film you need to have something to say! Don't just be an employee of the studio. Otherwise what's the point? The word director must be reclaimed".

"Female directors need to have a chance to develop their core skill sets to match the strength of their ideas to level the playing field with male directors".

"Let your situation define you. Own it. I don't understand why people say that something isn't possible. If I can work as an internationally recognised actress and director coming from a background living on the streets in Nottingham and London, then anything is possible. I knew I was a good actor and that had to stand for something".