First Recipients Are “The Woman King,” “A League of Their Own,” and “Gutsy”
(Los Angeles, CA – September 20, 2022) – The Critics Choice Association Women’s Committee is proud to announce the launch of a new initiative to recognize female-forward film and TV programming: The Seal of Female Empowerment in Entertainment. Called the “SOFEE,” the Seal recognizes outstanding new films and television series that illuminate the female experience and perspective through authentically told female-driven stories.
The CCA is pleased to announce that the first recipients of the SOFEE are:
Feature: “The Woman King” (Sony Pictures)
Scripted Series: “A League of Their Own” (Prime Video)
Docuseries: “Gutsy” (Apple TV+)
These first SOFEE recipients are standouts for their empowering depictions of women overcoming the societal limitations put upon them because of their gender.
“The Woman King” – with a predominantly female cast, along with a female writer, director, and cinematographer – is one of the most thrilling and powerful movies of the year. Inspired by true events, the film tells the story of a group of female warriors in Africa whose fierce and formidable reputation was strengthened by their bonds of sisterhood.
“A League of Their Own” is exceptional in how it contrasts the societal struggles of white women and women of color in the 1940s. The series uses comedy to reflect on the adversity women encountered playing a traditionally male sport, and highlights the danger queer women faced if their sexuality was discovered.
“Gutsy” offers community through an engaging examination of the challenges women in the world face today, with advice from inspirational women who are breaking barriers.
All three of these recipients earned a perfect score in the numerical formula that is used to determine if new titles, nominated by Women’s Committee members, are eligible for a SOFEE. Qualifying projects will have a prominent female character arc, give female characters at least equal screen time to male characters, have female leaders behind the scenes, and pass elements highlighted in the Bechdel test.
To be considered, new film and television releases must possess an artistic and storytelling value and exceptionality, and score at least 7 out of a possible 10 points in the SOFEE rubric, which can be found at CriticsChoice.com. There are no limits or quotas governing the number of SOFEE seals the CCA may grant.
“The last five years have seen a dramatic shift where women are being given significantly more opportunity to create large-scale entertainment,” said Tara McNamara, Chair of the CCA Women’s Committee. “The result is that half of the population is seeing truer representation on the screen. As the most influential critics organization, we believe it’s the role of the CCA to recognize studios and filmmakers making positive female-forward entertainment with an easy-to-spot seal graphic — perfect for a movie poster or TV ad. Our hope is that those who care about how women are depicted on screen and utilized behind the scenes will look for the SOFEE graphic to help inform their media consumption decisions.
Members involved in the conception of the Seal of Female Empowerment in Entertainment include Tara McNamara (Chair), Hillary Atkin, Lauren Bradshaw, TJ Callahan, Marah Eakin, Natasha Gargiulo, Toni Gonzales, Teri Hart, Susan Kamyab, Jennifer Merin, Louisa Moore, Gayl Murphy, Mary Murphy, Patricia Puentes, Christina Radish, Amanda Salas, Rachel Smith, Sammi Turano, Lynn Venhaus, and Elizabeth Weitzman, as well as CCA board member Paulette Cohn.
Digital assets and artwork can be found HERE.
About the Critics Choice Association (CCA)
The Critics Choice Association is the largest critics organization in the United States and Canada, representing more than 580 media critics and entertainment journalists. It was established in 2019 with the formal merger of the Broadcast Film Critics Association and the Broadcast Television Journalists Association, recognizing the intersection between film, television, and streaming content. For more information, visit: www.CriticsChoice.com.