In honor of Women's History Month, I am proud to present our sixth year of Women Writers Week at RogerEbert.com, spotlighting the essential voices of our female critics, directors and contributors with a full week devoted solely to their work. We will kick off the festivities this coming Friday, March 6th, so that new reviews from our women writers can be read alongside their fresh slate of interviews and essays exclusively on the homepage of Rogerebert.com until Friday, March 13th.
"We are committed every week of the year to showcasing the finest women writers on film and television, but once a year we make a special effort to remind our readers of just how great they are by shining a spotlight on their great work," said our Assistant Editor Nell Minow.
And while I love presenting the voices of women writers, I have to confess that it feels a bit retro in 2020 to have to continue to highlight this week. However, just at a time when we think more progress has been made in the world of entertainment, we had another year when neither the Oscars nor the Golden Globes could find a single woman director to nominate. Not Lulu Wang for "The Farewell," nor Marielle Heller for "A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood," or Greta Gerwig for "Little Women," or any other.
In the world of politics, I was heartened to see more women candidates for president, and more African-American candidates than ever before. While we knew that we had to whittle down the number of candidates on the Democratic ticket, it was still exciting to see Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar, Marianne Williamson, Kirsten Gillibrand and Tulsi Gabbard throw their hats in the ring. I live in Chicago and for the first time in its history we had two African-American women running for Mayor, with the winner, Mayor Lori Lightfoot, being the first openly gay mayor in Chicago's history. All of these things point to change that is inevitably on its way. And so we continue to raise our proudly female voices.
This week's enticing array of new film releases include Pixar's "Onward," indie darling Kelly Reichardt's "First Cow," Ben Affleck's inspirational sports drama, "The Way Back" and the Cannes prize-winner "Bacurau." They will be reviewed on Friday by our Assistant Editor Nell Minow and regular critics Monica Castillo, Tomris Laffly, Christy Lemire and Sheila O'Malley, alongside contributors Allison Shoemaker, Whitney Spencer, Roxana Hadadi, Arielle Bernstein, Kristy Puchko and Justine Smith. Most of these critics will also be joining an even larger group of film experts penning features during Women Writers Week. Expect to see additional articles from filmmakers Mary Mazzio, Wendy Wolverton, Jen Shelby and contributors Yolanda Machado, Sarah Adamson, Olivia Collette, Joyce Kulhawik, Carla Renata, Jana Monji, Shea Vassar, Candice McMillan, Valerie Kalfrin, Mary Beth McAndrews, Carrie Rickey, Abbey Bender, Sherin Nicole and yours truly.
Among the other highlights covered during Women Writers Week will be TV reviews of HBO's hugely anticipated new season of "Westworld" as well as the debut of Octavia Spencer's limited series on Netflix, "Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker." You will also be able to find interviews with filmmakers Kelly Reichardt ("First Cow"), Kelsey Mann ("Onward"), Ken Loach ("Sorry We Missed You"), Turner & Bill Ross IV ("Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets") and actor Winston Duke ("Black Panther"). Last but not least is a sneak peek of some topics guaranteed to be tackled in our Women Writers Week features: Gloria Steinem, "Jojo Rabbit," "A Quiet Place," "Supernatural," "Wings of Desire," Gender Bias in Criticism, Horror in the Age of #MeToo, and more.
So please join us for what promises to be one of our most stellar weeks at RogerEbert.com!