Elizabeth Banks calls out Steven Spielberg: 'He's never made a movie with a female lead'


Elizabeth Banks delivered some hard truths about women and Hollywood on Wednesday, which included a knock for hallowed director Steven Spielberg.

Accepting an award from non-profit group Women in Film, Banks expressed her frustration over the lack of female stories in the marketplace and the low number of women invited to tell those stories.

"I went to 'Indiana Jones' and 'Jaws' and every movie Steven Spielberg ever made, and by the way, he's never made a movie with a female lead. Sorry, Steven. I don't mean to call your ass out but it's true," Banks told the crowd at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Actually, of the 30 feature films Spielberg has directed, one did feature a female protagonist. That was 1998's "The Color Purple." Someone in the audience pointed this out to Banks, and the star moved on.

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BEVERLY HILLS, CA - JUNE 13: Actress Elizabeth Banks arrives at the Women In Film 2017 Crystal + Lucy Awards Presented By Max Mara And BMW at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on June 13, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 01: Elizabeth Banks attends the 'Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between' Costume Institute Gala at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 1, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by George Pimentel/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 22: Actress Elizabeth Banks attends Humane Society of The United States' annual To The Rescue! Los Angeles benefit at Paramount Studios on April 22, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
WESTWOOD, CA - MARCH 22: Elizabeth Banks attends the premiere of Lionsgate's 'Power Rangers' on March 22, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 22: Elizabeth Banks and Haim Saban attend a Star Ceremony on The Hollywood Walk Of Fame Honoring Haim Saban on March 22, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Todd Williamson/Getty Images for Lionsgate)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 15: Elizabeth Banks is seen at LAX on March 15, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by starzfly/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0640 -- Pictured: Actress Elizabeth Banks arrives on March 16, 2017 -- (Photo by: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Elizabeth Banks attends the 2017 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Graydon Carter at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 26, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Actor Elizabeth Banks attends the 2017 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Graydon Carter at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 26, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
MODERN FAMILY - 'Do You Believe In Magic' - Fearful that the romance between him and Claire is fizzling, Phil calls upon his altar ego, Clive Bixby, get Valentines day back on track. Meanwhile, much to Gloria's chagrin, Jay shows a bit of child favoritism when he and Gloria must deal with Joe's inappropriate Valentine gift-giving and Manny's dating indecisiveness. When Cam and Mitch try to empower Lily, Haley and Sal (Elizbeth Banks) to stand up to the men in their lives, things don't turn out as planned and go overboard. Finally, Alex discovers she has a secret admirer who may be a little too involved with family, on Modern Family,' airing WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 8 (9:00-9:31 p.m. EST), on the ABC Television Network. (Richard Cartwright/ABC via Getty Images) JESSE TYLER FERGUSON, ELIZABETH BANKS, ERIC STONESTREET
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - DECEMBER 09: Actress Elizabeth Banks attends the 2016 March of Dimes Celebration of Babies at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on December 9, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - DECEMBER 09: Actors Bryce Dallas Howard (L) and Elizabeth Banks attend 2016 March of Dimes Celebration of Babies at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on December 9, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for March of Dimes )
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 14: Actress Elizabeth Banks attends Glamour Women Of The Year 2016 at NeueHouse Hollywood on November 14, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Glamour)
ARCADIA, CA - NOVEMBER 05: Actresses Emily Ratajkowski (L) and Elizabeth Banks at the 2016 Breeders' Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park on November 5, 2016 in Arcadia, California. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Breeders' Cup)
ARCADIA, CA - NOVEMBER 05: Actress Elizabeth Banks attends the 33rd Breeder's Cup World Championship at Santa Anita Park on November 5, 2016 in Arcadia, California. (Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - NOVEMBER 02: Actress Elizabeth Banks arrives at the Opening Night of 'Hedwig and The Angry Inch' at the Pantages Theatre on November 2, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/WireImage)
HAVERFORD, PA - OCTOBER 04: Actress Elizabeth Banks speaks during a Family Town Hall event with democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her daughter Chelsea Clinton at Haverford Community Recreation and Environmental Center on October 4, 2016 in Haverford, Pennsylvania. Hillary Clinton is campaigning in Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - SEPTEMBER 15: Actress Elizabeth Banks attends the Audi Celebrates The 68th Emmys at Catch LA on September 15, 2016 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 27: Actress, producer, and director, Elizabeth Banks is seen out and about during the 2016 Democratic National Convention on July 27, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Gilbert Carrasquillo/GC Images)
ABC NEWS - 7/26/16 - Coverage of the 2016 Democratic National Convention from the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA which airs on all ABC News programs and platforms. (Photo by Ida Mae Astute/ABC via Getty Images) ELIZABETH BANKS
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Her comments echo ones made by Juliette Binoche, who last year revealed she once confronted Spielberg about his lack of female leads.

Banks discussed how her sons are often exposed to empowering female stories like in Disney's "Frozen," and how they will see "Wonder Woman" when they're old enough.

"Buy a fucking ticket to a movie with a woman, take them, give them the experience of seeing amazing women on film," Banks encouraged of mothers.

Her point, however, was not diluted: opportunity is dramatically limited for female directors, so their on-screen stories are not equally represented.

"I directed one movie. I'm really glad to be up here and getting an award, but it's really about expanding the roles of women in this industry," she told the crowd, which included her presenter and Universal Pictures Chairman Donna Langley.

"Part of the reason I'm here is because the movie made $287 million," Banks said, referring to Universal's "Pitch Perfect 2." She'll next direct a reboot of the "Charlie's Angels" franchise.

TheWrap did a quick gender tally of Spielberg's films, by the way. One could argue the 1974 film "The Sugarland Express" had a female lead in Goldie Hawn, and his recent "The BFG" had a young female lead in Ruby Barnhill — but most of the conversation in that film centered around Spielberg's latest must Mark Rylance).

Banks seems to be on the money.

Read original story Elizabeth Banks Calls Out Steven Spielberg: 'He's Never Made a Movie With a Female Lead' At TheWrap

See photos of Steven Spielberg:
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Steven Spielberg out and about
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 27: Steven Spielberg attends 'Five Came Back' world premiere at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on March 27, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Chance Yeh/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 27: Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw attend 'Five Came Back' world premiere at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on March 27, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Chance Yeh/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 15: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Glenn Close as 'Norma Desmond' and Steven Spielberg pose backstage at the matinee of the hit musical 'Sunset Boulevard' on Broadway at The Palace Theater on February 15, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 08: Founder, USC Shoah Foundation Steven Spielberg (L) and honoree George Lucas attend Ambassadors for Humanity Gala Benefiting USC Shoah Foundation at The Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland Center on December 8, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 08: Founder, USC Shoah Foundation Steven Spielberg speaks onstage during Ambassadors for Humanity Gala Benefiting USC Shoah Foundation at The Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland Center on December 8, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 25: Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw are seen on October 25, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Gardiner Anderson/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 15: Kate Capshaw, Steven Spielberg, Tom Hanks, and Rita Wilson at theThe Museum of Modern Art Film Benefit: A Tribute to Tom Hanks at The Museum of Modern Art on November 15, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
BEIJING, CHINA - OCTOBER 10: American director Steven Spielberg attends promotional event for his film 'Big Friendly Giant' at Tsinghua University on October 10, 2016 in Beijing, China. (Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 17: Mark Rylance and Steven Spielberg arrive for the UK film premiere of 'The BFG' at Odeon Leicester Square on July 17, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 21: Composer John Williams (L) and director Steven Spielberg arrive at the premiere of Disney's 'The BFG' at the El Capitan Theatre on June 21, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 21: Steven Spielberg arrives at the Los Angeles premiere of Disney's 'The BFG' held at the El Capitan Theatre on June 21, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Michael Tran/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 09: Actress Kate Capshaw and director Steven Spielberg attend the 44th AFI Life Achievement Awards gala tribute at Dolby Theatre on June 9, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 09: Director Steven Spielberg onstage during American Film Institute�s 44th Life Achievement Award Gala Tribute show to John Williams at Dolby Theatre on June 9, 2016 in Hollywood, California. 26148_001 (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Turner)
CAMBRIDGE, MA - MAY 26: Steven Spielberg receives an Honorary Doctor of Arts Degree from Harvard University at their 365th Commencement Exerices at Harvard University on May 26, 2016 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (Photo by Paul Marotta/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 19: Director Steven Spielberg stops by the set of 'Rebel in the Rye' on May 19, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
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