In an industry dominated by men, Marvel’s comics and movies reflect the genre’s lack of female representation. Although Marvel has some female characters, such as Black Widow and She-Hulk, the brand is dominated by male heroes and villains like Spider-Man, Black Panther and Thor.
But there’s been a huge breakthrough in the world of cinematography and superheroes. Pinar Toprak was signed to compose the music for “Captain Marvel” as the first woman composer for a comic book movie or Marvel film.
Toprak was born in Turkey and studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston and Cal State Northridge. Although you may not recognize the name, you are most likely familiar with her work from “Krypton” and “Fortnite,” the popular video game. She also contributed music to “Justice League.”
Toprak won the International Film Music Critics Award two years in a row, in 2011 and again in 2012.
In an Instagram post announcing her signing agreement, Toprak wrote, “I’m so thrilled to finally announce that I will be scoring the upcoming CAPTAIN MARVEL! It’s an incredible honor to be part of the Marvel Universe. So many thoughts racing through my head…”
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I’m so thrilled to finally announce that I will be scoring the upcoming CAPTAIN MARVEL! It’s an incredible honor to be a part of the Marvel Universe. So many thoughts racing through my head. And the main one is gratitude. I have so many people to thank for helping me on this journey but first and foremost, my incredible agents Laura Engel and Richard Kraft for believing in me from day one and Dave Jordan and directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck for giving me this opportunity of a lifetime. #captainmarvel
The release date is set for March 8, 2019. The main character, Captain Marvel, will be played by Brie Larson and will make history as the first superhero movie with a female lead.
What’s more, the film is breaking down barriers of gender inequality all over the place, as Anna Boden will be the first female Marvel director, accompanied by Ryan Fleck.
A survey conducted by San Diego State University found, “just 1 percent to 2 percent of composers working on the top 250 films at the box office were women.”
The Center for the Study of Women in Television & Film also conducted a study titled, “Indie Women: Behind the Scenes Employment of Women in Independent Film, 2017-18.”
Through the study of film festivals, the Center concluded that “85 percent of the independent films screening at the festivals had no women cinematographers, 77 percent had no women writers, 73 percent had no women editors, 67 percent had no women executive producers, 66 percent had no women directors, and 33 percent had no women producers.”
Marvel is working to correct the under-representation of female directors. Rachel Morrison was the female cinematographer behind “Black Panther” and was also the first female cinematographer nominated for an Oscar.
According to Variety, “Captain Marvel” will be the 20th movie released by Marvel Studios. During a Q&A session, fans and audience members expressed their desire for the next 20 movies released by the company to be dominated by female directors.
Kevin Feige, the president of Marvel Studios, said he is devoted to continue presenting diversity through the company’s upcoming films and will “follow the precedent set by ‘Captain Marvel.’”
“I cannot promise that all 20 Marvel movies will have female directors but a heck of a lot of them will,” Feige said.
Here’s to a new age of women dominating the world of superheroes.