Jason Blum is a key figure in the horror movie business. He and his production company, Blumhouse, are responsible for some of the most popular (and critically acclaimed) scary flicks of the past few years, including Get Out, Paranormal Activity, and The Purge. His recent comments about female horror directors, however, aren’t receiving the same praise.
In an interview with Polygon earlier this week, Blum said the reason Blumhouse has never hired a woman director is because female filmmakers aren’t interested in horror. “There are not a lot of female directors period, and even less who are inclined to do horror,” he explained. (Hmmm, we can think of a few.) “I’m a massive admirer of [Babadook director] Jennifer Kent. I’ve offered her every movie we’ve had available. She’s turned me down every time.” Twitter users, unsurprisingly, weren’t too keen on his comments.
Blum was later asked about his comments by Variety, and he admitted that he “totally misspoke.” “I made a mistake about it,” he said. “Our audience is 55% women; the executives at the company we have are 50% women. I am passionate about hiring women, and I totally made a mistake in the way I represented that. We already work with a lot of women … today was a great day for me because I learned a lot and because there are a lot of women out there that I’m going to meet as a result of today so I’m grateful for it.” To further his point, Blum also issued an apology on Twitter, reiterating how he’ll be more cognizant of women creators going forward.
Let’s hope he stands by his word.