Other female Wisconsin directors

Culture & Entertainment, Spotlight — By

Jill and Karen Sprecher: Often referred to as “the Coen sisters” in reference to Joel and Ethan Coen, Karen and Jill Sprecher are both Madison natives and UW-Madison graduates. Their Midwestern roots, sibling collaboration and sardonic writing and directing style earned them critical acclaim for 1997’s “Clockwatchers” and 2001’s “Thirteen Conversations About One Thing.” The Sprechers are currently working on “The Convincer” starring Lea Thompson, Billy Crudup and Greg Kinnear, due out in 2011.

Bette Gordon: Feminist and avant-garde filmmaker Bette Gordon got her start while attending grad school at UW-Madison and continued to make experimental films while a professor at UW-Milwaukee. Her 1983 film “Variety” about a young ticket-taker at a pornographic theater is regarded by many as a feminist classic.

Mary Sweeney: She won the Golden Badger award at last year’s Wisconsin Film Festival for Best Narrative Feature and Best Director for her feature-length narrative “Baraboo,” which tells the story of six people living in a rundown motel in small-town Wisconsin. A Madison native, Sweeney is an Associate Professor at the Writing Division at the School of Cinematic Arts, University of Southern California.

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