Setting sail in a storm of sexism - Maiden documentary tells story of first all-female round the world crew

In September 1989 – two months before the Berlin Wall fell – a group of young women set sail from Southampton to much ridicule. They were on board the ‘Maiden’ and were the first all-female crew to attempt the gruelling Whitbread Round the World race.


Thirty years later isn’t a lifetime ago, but the idea of mainstream media ridicule of ‘girls’ attempting the same challenge as ‘men’ is publicly, at least, not possible. But if you want to see what British sailor Tracy Edwards and the crew of the ‘Maiden’ faced back in the 1980s then you must see ‘Maiden’, directed by Alex Holmes -which along with ‘Free Solo’ is one of the best documentaries of the last few months.

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Electra Talent Watch: Bumble's Female Film Force - the sequel

Not all sequels are bigger and better (anyone still shudder at Charlie’s Angels Full Throttle?)  – but Bumble’s Female Film Force Part 2 certainly is.

The female social networking app is expanding its female film fund to France and Germany, having already given five female filmmaking teams in the UK and Ireland grants of £20,000 each to create their own short film. More grants of £20,000 (22,000 Euros) are up for grabs for film ideas by women producers, writers and directors.

Electra met some of FFF’s first winners a few months ago – and now here they are again, with their short films completely finished, and a London premiere where the five filmmaking teams got to meet up.

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"I certainly didn't make it for the hell of it." Electra meets Oscar nominated director Nadine Labaki

Amidst the annual frustrated disappointment that yet again, women were lacking in the Oscar directing and writing categories, there she was - Nadine Labaki, up for a Best Foreign Language Oscar for Capernaum, which started its journey with a 15 minute standing ovation at last year’s Cannes Film Festival and left many of us in the audience weeping.


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