The Producers' Guild of America is taking a necessary step in Hollywood, as it announced its new anti-sexual harassment guidelines on Friday, Variety reports. But what made the news even more significant is that the upcoming Wonder Woman sequel will officially be the first film to implement this policy.
PGA presidents Gary Lucchesi and Lori McCreary said in a statement:
"Sexual harassment can no longer be tolerated in our industry or within the ranks of the Producers Guild membership. We provide key leadership in creating and sustaining work environments built on mutual respect, so it is our obligation to change our culture and eradicate this abuse. While the PGA is a voluntary membership organization, the PGA’s Anti-Sexual Harassment Guidelines are sanctioned as best practices for our members. The PGA is indebted to Time’s Up as a resource in creating our protocols. We will continue to work with them, the industry-wide Commission led by Anita Hill, and other organizations in our community until sexual harassment is eliminated from the entertainment workplace."
The new guidelines are asking production companies of the following: "complies with federal and state laws, offers a range of reporting procedures, and provide in-person anti-sexual harassment training for all members of the cast and crew at the start of any production, including at the start of any new season for ongoing productions."
As we've seen with the Time's Up initiative and the #MeToo support at the 2018 Golden Globes, it's time for Hollywood to put their words behind actions—now more than ever before. And the PGA enlisting Wonder Woman 2 to set the much-needed new Hollywood precedent couldn't have come at a better time. The original movie is backed by badass female figures, with Gal Gadot playing lead and Patty Jenkins behind the director's chair (she'll be helming the sequel too). And last year, Lynda Carter (the OG Wonder Woman) called out director James Cameron for his ongoing sexist remarks regarding the superheroine. "You poor soul. Perhaps you do not understand the character. I most certainly do," the actress said. "Like all women—we are more than the sum of our parts. Your thuggish jabs at a brilliant director, Patty Jenkins, are ill advised.
Cameron rightfully caught a lot of heat when he criticized the movie. “All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over ‘Wonder Woman’ has been so misguided. She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing! I’m not saying I didn’t like the movie but, to me, it’s a step backwards. Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon," the director told The Guardian while referencing his Terminator character. "She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit. And to me, [the benefit of characters like Sarah] is so obvious. I mean, half the audience is female!”
The timing of these guidelines also arrive in the midst of the constant sexual assault and misconduct allegations tacked onto some of the biggest players in Hollywood. One of them being Brett Ratner, who will no longer be part of the Wonder Woman sequel following the ongoing sexual harassment allegations against him. His RatPac-Dune Entertainment financing company helped bankroll Wonder Woman. “Everyone knows the way that I feel because I’m not hiding anything. But the truth is, there’s so many people involved in making this movie, it’s not just me, and they all echoed the same sentiments. You know what I mean?" Gadot explained. "Everyone knew what was the right thing to do, but there was nothing for me to actually come and say, ’cause it was already done before this article came out, you know?”
Wonder Woman broke the box office record for biggest female director opening, and went on to gross $409 million at the domestic box office and $813 million worldwide, becoming a huge success for the studio. Wonder Woman 2 is set to premiere on Nov. 1, 2019. Next, check out this Fuse interview where Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso says Marvel is "long past" wanting "scantily clad characters":