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Photographed by Christopher Patey From left, front row: Kathleen Kennedy, Jacqui Lopez and Athena Portillo. From left, back row: Rhonda Hjort, Janet Lewin, Lori Aultman, Rayne Roberts, Kayleen Walters, Vicki Dobbs Beck and Pippa Anderson photographed by Christopher Patey on Nov. 19 at Skywalker Ranch in Nicasio, Calif.

Photographed by Christopher Patey
From left, front row: Kathleen Kennedy, Jacqui Lopez and Athena Portillo. From left, back row: Rhonda Hjort, Janet Lewin, Lori Aultman, Rayne Roberts, Kayleen Walters, Vicki Dobbs Beck and Pippa Anderson photographed by Christopher Patey on Nov. 19 at Skywalker Ranch in Nicasio, Calif.

Kathleen Kennedy came under some fire recently over her comments that female directors are currently unqualified to direct a Star Wars movie because they lack big-budget experience — despite many of Star Wars male directors in the past lacking the proper credentials themselves. This week, she seeks to rectify some of the blowback by highlighting Lucasfilms‘ executive team, over half of which are made up of women.

“When you have a balance of men and women, there are all sorts of things that enter into the discussion,” says Kennedy, calling the Rey-Jyn doubleheader a “coincidence” that the studio (and Disney) embraced. “Because women are always in story meetings, [no one has] to go, ‘Hey, what would a woman think?’ ” says creative executive Rayne Roberts. “The reason Rey is strong and technically capable and compassionate and driven is that the women who were in that room, including Kathy, reflect those qualities.”

Rogue One star Felicity Jones adds, “Kathy has given women the kind of roles they’ve always dreamed of.”

Kennedy took over Lucasfilm in 2012. Among her moves, she hired senior vp development Kiri Hart to oversee story across the entire Star Wars universe — books, video games, television series, movies, etc. — and elevated Lynwen Brennan to executive vp and general manager.

“Our company being global and matrixed — there are so many projects we’re constantly juggling — is tailored to the strengths of female leaders, who are really good multitaskers,” says vp production Janet Lewin.

So Star Wars may not have a woman directing any of their films yet, but who pretty much “run the world?” Girls.

Source: Hollywood Reporter

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Christina E. Janke

Christina is the co-host of “Intro to Geek” on Shauncastic and Editor-in-Chief at Agents of Geek. Her love of all things Mass Effect knows no bounds. She also carries an obsession with comic books, video games, and quirky television shows. Her heroes are Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Gail Simone. She hopes to be just like them when she grows up.

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