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IMDb Adds an ‘F’ Rating for Movies Made by Women

Dave Parrack 07-03-2017

Women are somewhat underrepresented in the film industry 10 Geeky Movie Marathons Everyone Should Try Here are a bunch of geeky movie marathons that you should watch at least once in your life, if you can find the time! Read More . While there are plenty of women working in the industry, a high proportion of movies are still written, directed by, and star men. The situation is changing, but in the meantime we have something called “the F-Rating”.


According to BBC News, the F-Rating is a new classification introduced by Bath Film Festival director Holly Tarquini in 2014. It has since been adopted by cinemas and festivals across the UK. However, it’s now set to be added to the Internet Movie Database, better known as IMDb.

F Is for Female

To qualify for an F-Rating, a movie has to be either written by a woman, directed by a woman, or “feature significant women on screen in their own right”. This is an extension of the Bechdel Test, which denotes films in which two female characters talk to each other about something other than a man.

According to Tarquini, over 21,000 movies on IMDb have been tagged with the F-Rating. Several, including Frozen, Bridget Jones’s Baby, and American Honey meet all three criteria — having been written, directed by, and starring women — earning themselves a Triple F-Rating.

For the uninitiated, IMDb is a website that boasts more than 250 million visitors every month. It recently caused controversy by killing its message boards IMDb Kills its Message Boards Because of Trolls IMDb is shutting down its popular message boards. This is down to a combination of waning interest and the tenacity of trolls. Read More . Its boss Col Needham told BBC News, “The F-Rating is a great way to highlight women on screen and behind the camera.”

Not Exactly Front and Center

There is indeed a list of F-Rated movies available on IMDb. And you can sort these by popularity, IMDb rating, and a number of other metrics. However, unless you know where to look, IMDb isn’t exactly putting this front and center. Which seems like a missed opportunity.


What do you think of the F-Rating? Are you pleased to see IMDb adopting it? Do you think it’s a positive move to help identify movies made by women? Will it help publicize the representation of women on and off screen? Please let us know in the comments below!

Image Credit: Rodrigo Paredes via Flickr

Related topics: IMDb, Movie Recommendations.

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  1. Fred Thompson
    March 8, 2017 at 1:03 pm

    Yeah, my first thought was this is a sexist/fetish thing. My second thought was, "I wish Pandora did this for vocalists."

    All things being equal (equal /= equivalent) action and chick movies are different and are best with different creative mindsets. It would be nice to have some form of classification. I differential between Goodfellas and Natural Born Killers; one is a crime movie, the other is a violence vehicle. Having stated that, I like the Kill Bill movies for artistic reasons. A Bridge Too Far is very different from that forgettable...Basturds.

    I say, give this a chance and let's see if it grows into something useful or if it's just pollution.

  2. Spark Heart
    March 7, 2017 at 9:50 pm
  3. Howard A Pearce
    March 7, 2017 at 2:48 pm

    "To qualify for an F-Rating, a movie has to be either written by a woman, directed by a woman, or “feature significant women on screen in their own right”. "

    This only paves the way for LGBT ratings or B ratings for black etc.
    Which classes of people will be excluded/included ?

    I can only detract from the purpose of IMDb to one of pushing political correctness

    • watcher
      March 7, 2017 at 4:29 pm

      BLM films!