Pacific Standard opens doors for women in film

Reese Witherspoon’s production company has gained recognition for its groundbreaking films

Tab Sylvester, A&E/Social Media Editor

In an industry still dominated by men, major roles for women in film are few and far between. That’s why in 2012, actress and producer Reese Witherspoon decided to create her own production company because, in her words, “women deserve better.”

Witherspoon is a vocal advocate in the fight for more complex roles for women in film. In an interview with the Huffington Post, Witherspoon explained, “I set out with the idea that I wanted to develop material that has strong female leads. I wanted to make movies about what I want to put out into the world — put some good into the world.”

Witherspoon created her production company Pacific Standard with the help of Australian film producer Bruna Papandrea. The first two films produced by the company were David Fincher’s ‘Gone Girl’ (2014) and Jean-Marc Vallee’s ‘Wild’ (2014) – both of which received Oscar nominations. Both films featured prominent female leads that help keep modern-day feminism and the movement to improve female roles in the forefront of American film discussions alive.

Witherspoon hopes to create roles that feature important, strong and independent women that stand up and fight for what they believe in. According to an online article from Forbes, Witherspoon shared her moment of realization at the Toronto Film Festival last year and stated, “I suddenly started to realize that scripts were not that great, particularly for women.”

One of the more intriguing aspects of Witherspoon’s campaign has been what she has done through social media – specifically on her Instagram page. Each Monday, Witherspoon posts a picture of a woman who inspires her and uses the hashtag #MondayMuse. Her muse’s have featured women such as Laura Dern, Jodie Foster, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Jessica Lange, Cheryl Strayed and more. Witherspoon hopes to continue to be an inspirational and powerful voice in the film industry and is determined to create a bigger niche for women in Hollywood.