Dear Hollywood: We know how you can make more money in 2014
January 6, 2014
The biggest blockbusters of 2013 scored pretty well on the Bechdel Test, a measure of quality onscreen time for women—but even better at the box office
Dear Hollywood: We know how you can make more money in 2014.
Put more women onscreen.
We analyzed the top 50 biggest box office movies of 2013 to see if they passed the Bechdel Test, which evaluates whether a movie has two or more women in it who have a conversation about something other than a man. It’s named after cartoonist Alison Bechdel, who wrote about it in her popular comic Dykes to Watch Out For. (Bechdel actually credits her friend Liz Wallace with the rule.)
The three-part criteria for a movie to pass:
It has to have (1) at least two women in it, who (2) talk to each other about (3) something besides a man.
Out of 50 total movies we looked at, 17, or 36 percent, passed with flying colors. An additional seven technically passed, but are deemed “dubious” by Bechdel-watchers because of the dialogue (some of it was about a man, some of it wasn’t, but not much).
What we found is this: The grand total domestic box office number for the movies that passed is significantly higher than the domestic box office total for the movies that didn’t. We’re talking billions.