Women in comedy: Are we fair to funny females?

From left, Melissa McCarthy, Ellie Kemper, Rose Byrne, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Maya 
Rudolph and Kristen Wiig star in “Bridesmaids,” which opens Friday.

Six women on a movie poster is not a typical product of Hollywood marketing. But with “Bridesmaids” opening Friday, the women of comedy are hoping that this rarity will become the norm.

It’s no secret that men tend to dominate the comedy world, despite the presence of multitalented juggernauts like Tina Fey on the rise. One TV producer theorizes that mass audiences don’t like seeing women do risque humor.

“Men and women aren’t as comfortable watching women joke about bodily functions, masturbating, sex,” says comedian and television producer Marianne Schaberg. “It ‘creeps’ them out.”

While that may be true, many funny ladies don’t feel as if they’re judged to be less hilarious than their male counterparts within the comedy community.

“[The problem] is something that women face in a lot of occupations, which is that people don’t assume a woman to be the natural leader of a group,” says Caitlin Tegart, comedy writer and sketch teacher at New York’s Upright Citizen’s Brigade. “Maybe they’re not chosen as head writer or director as quickly.”

Boston-based improv comedian Marty Johnson adds that female comedy writers are the key to seeing more female-driven comedies.

“Eventually it won’t be weird to see a film like ‘Bridesmaids’ in theaters; they will just be comedies with people in them, whether or not they have boobs,” she says. “It comes down to the number of scripts that are being written by female comedy writers who have access to industry players. Women are going to write hilarious parts for other women, because that’s just the reality of their worlds.”

But there are rays of hope in television, says New York-based comedian Shannon O’Neill.

“On Thursday nights you have two female-led sitcoms — “30 Rock” and “Parks and Recreation” — so already there, we’re at the 50/50 point,” she says. “It might seem unusual to people now, but ‘Bridesmaids’ is just the starting point of absolutely more to come.”

Box office dollars

Some professional funny ladies feel that the lack of a female presence in big-budget comedies comes down to money, plain and simple. Glennis McMurray is the founder of theGLOC.net — that’s Gorgeous Ladies of Comedy — which serves as a forum for female comedians. She’s gathering as many women as she can to go see “Bridesmaids” this weekend, in the hopes of boosting the film’s box office numbers.

“It’s likely that movies are a risky business and [producers] need a surefire formula or franchise before they hit the green-light button,” she says.

“That’s why a huge opening weekend for ‘Bridesmaids’ is so important!”


For more movie news, follow Heidi Patalano on Twitter
@HeidiatMetro.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Supporters say man accused of robbery was misidentified

A Liberian immigrant couple charged with extorting money from an elderly woman in March will be in court Thursday for a bail hearing, but supporters say it's a case of…

International

Canadian charged in 'Heartbleed' attack on tax agency

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian police have arrested a 19-year-old man and charged him in connection with exploiting the "Heartbleed" bug to steal taxpayer data from…

Local

Could this be the end of ICE holds…

Mayor Michael Nutter directed city agencies to stop cooperating with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainer holds via executive order today.

National

Every dog has his day in court, in…

(Reuters) - Call him juror K-9.A computer glitch is likely to blame for a summons that called a German Shepherd to report for jury duty,…

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

Television

Jim Rash talks 'The Writer's Room' and amazing…

For Jim Rash, as the fifth season of "Community" comes to a close, the second season of "The Writer's Room" begins.

Television

'Dexter' star Jennifer Carpenter moves into producing role

The actress who played the title character's sister in "Dexter" is teaming up with producer George Stelzner to adapt Erika Hayasaki's book "The Death Class:…

The Word

Wahlburgers announce North America domination

Tuesday was a huge day for Donnie Wahlberg.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

NHL

Flyers, Rangers meet in playoffs for 11th time

The Flyers and Rangers will start a new chapter in a historic rivalry.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers…

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers and Braves right behind

NHL

Top 5 Philadelphia storylines for Flyers-Rangers

The slate is clean for the Flyers and the Rangers. Which is good news for the Flyers.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.

Tech

5 surprising facts about Google Glass

Your sex life could get more interesting.