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Friday 19 October 2018

Women in TV and film alerted each other via 'bush telegraph' about men prone to sexist behaviour - filmmaker Emer Reynolds

Filmmaker Emer Reynolds
Filmmaker Emer Reynolds
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

Acclaimed Irish filmmaker Emer Reynolds says women working in the TV and film industry used to alert each other via ‘a sort of bush telegraph’ about male colleagues prone to sexist behaviour.

Reynolds worked as an editor in the UK and Ireland for twenty years before becoming a film maker.

Asked if she had experienced sexism in the film and TV industry she said; “Thankfully I haven't experienced bullying but I was aware of stories.

"A sort of bush telegraph would go around amongst women saying ‘don’t get a taxi with him’,” she said.

“I was also aware of the low level sexism - my husband works in the same industry and he would be offered more money for the same jobs.

“And I was also very aware of the lack of female voices on screen, and the silencing of their stories.”

Reynolds, who directed epic space movie The Farthest, is taking part in this year’s Dublin Feminist Film Festival.

Voyager Float, The Farthest
Voyager Float, The Farthest

Her movie, which follows the Voyager I and II probes, will be screened in the New Theatre in Temple Bar on November 17.

Both Voyager I and II were launched in 1977. In 2012, Voyager I travelled though the heliopause and became the first human made object to make it into interstellar space - where it remains today.

"I have always been obsessed with space. I wanted to be an astronaut when I was younger and was aware of the Voyager travelling through my childhood," she said. "I think this film is for anyone who has ever looked up and wondered how."

The film won Best Irish Documentary and the Audience Award at the Dublin International Film Festival and was described as "awe-inspiring" but the New York Times.

Golden Record US flag Voyager. The Farthest
Golden Record US flag Voyager. The Farthest

Reynolds hopes the film will inspire young women hoping to make it in the film industry.

The movie has also been shortlisted for Best Documentary in the 7th Irish Film London Awards which take place later this month.

She will go up against ‘In the Name of Peace: John Hume in America’ directed by Maurice Fitzpatrick and narrated by Liam Neeson.

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