I was lucky enough to listen to Jill Soloway speak recently at a small gathering to discuss a new filmic voice for women, hosted by the genius and innovative Emily Best, CEO of the crowdfunding and distribution platform Seed & Spark. Soloway spoke so eloquently about her process and about women’s opportunities and struggles in the film industry. She was so engrossing and inspiring to listen to that there was a palpable feeling of magic in the room. One of the valuable lessons I took away from our discussion was about her career turning point — from producer to filmmaker — is that she realized that no one else was going to make it happen for her. It makes me wonder how many other women and men are waiting for permission to make their masterpieces, and license to make the characters within them bold, alive, and human.
Let’s face it: many of us feminists will pay lip service to sex workers’ rights while at the same time hold within us a mess of conflicting feelings around the subject. In fact, many of us are probably a bit more repressed about sex than we’d care to admit. The idea that there are women who voluntarily seek out such work has long been a feminist conundrum. But perhaps the bigger problem is the paternalistic impulse of feminists trying to rescue sex workers. Jill Soloway, the writer and director of Afternoon Delight knows this all too well. As she says in an interview about the film, “It’s not just about rescue. If you’re into rescue go rescue the garment workers. It’s about amping up your own relationship to your own shame around sex.”
Watch more cool animation and creative cartoons at Aniboom Directed by Michael Varnum.