Band Aid, the Sundance hit about a couple turning fights into songs, comes to Minneapolis/St. Paul this Friday. Reviews for Band Aid indicate that it is funny, poignant, and original (our review later this week will either confirm or deny these reports). But there is something else that separates Band Aid from other films, and it’s worth recognizing.
The film, written, directed and produced by its lead actor, Zoe Lister-Jones, was crewed entirely by women. The only men who worked on Band Aid appear on screen. Everyone else, everywhere else, was a woman. This extended even to the Lister-Jones husband, Daryl Wein, who was not permitted to visit his wife on the all-female set.
Vulture has the full story, and it’s worth checking out. Here’s a couple highlights:
Zoe Lister-Jones: “On a lot of indie sets, there’s a sense of just like, ‘Let’s get through this, this nightmare, this is hell, I’m being paid nothing.’ This was nourishing in the best possible way. For the women on that crew, there was a sense of revolutionary spirit or something that drove the work. These are all women that don’t get opportunities. To not only be given that opportunity, but to be in this slight alternate universe where everyone has an opportunity and nobody’s being interrupted, it influenced the work we were making.”
Producer Natalia Anderson: “Had we said, ‘Hey, just try your best to hire as many women as you can,’ it would’ve gone zero layers deep. Our DP has someone she’s used to working with, our production designer has men she’s used to working with. Across the board, that’s how it would’ve gone. That’s why it had to be a mandate. There were a lot of challenges in finding crew: The pool is much smaller, and you have the catch-22 of people don’t have enough experience because they never get the opportunity. We really had to say, ‘We will be hiring people who will not have significantly strong résumés, and we’re just going to have to know that that is part of what this is going to be.’”
Adam Pally: “You instantly realize just, like, how horrible men are in the workplace — probably always, in all jobs. Men are awful: They walk around with very little fear of repercussion because they’re like, What’s the worst that’s going to happen to me? Nothing, while a woman has to work twice as hard or apologize for the fact that she’s even there. When you come to a set like this and it’s all women, all that ego goes away and you just have this really seamless collective that was working extremely hard and not judgmental at all. It was just about getting the job done, and that’s a testament to Zoe.”