RIP Bill Paxton, a very kind, cool and down to earth man. http://people.com/movies/bill-paxton-dead-complications-surgery-age-61/
I sat with him at a DGA event in 2011. That event was the seed that started the International Women in Film Podcast.
In 2011 the first woman to win an Academy Award for best director was Kathryn Bigelow. This was a GAME CHANGING achievement. Today in 2017 is the 89th Academy Awards. There has never been another female director win to date. 89 years is a long time.
On March 8, 2011, the DGA Women’s Steering Committee (WSC) hosted a special evening in honor of Director Kathryn Bigelow. The event gathered notable Industry veterans to pay homage to Bigelow, whose innovative artistry and barrier-breaking achievements make her, in every sense, a game-changer. In 2010 with her film The Hurt Locker, Bigelow became the first woman to win the DGA Feature Film Award and the Academy Award for Best Director.
I was in the second row, behind Kathryn Bieglow and right next to Bill Paxton, who had worked with Kathryn Bigelow on Near Dark:
“Actor Bill Paxton regaled the audience with colorful anecdotes of their work together on Near Dark.” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0093605/
He was all smiles, super polite. He introduced himself to me (as if I didn’t know who he was, ha!) We just hung there together, like old friends, watching, listening and applauding everyone speak. He was so genuinely happy for Kathryn Bigelow and to be at the event.
Angela Basset and Lori Petty, who also spoke, also sat in my row. It was a wonderful tribute.
Together, we shared a game changing event for a game changer.
That was the day I when I realized that women needed more of a voice, and also opportunities in film.
I’ll never forget you Bill Paxton!
Thanks to Sandra Milliner, Director and Actor, for inviting me to that event.