The Finnish Broadcasting Company Yle has looked into gender inequality in Finnish cinema and published a report on its findings.
It found that men outnumber women two to one throughout cinema’s history in Finland. Between the 1970s and 2000s, no women were included in the top ten listings of actors.
Looking back to the early years of Finnish cinema, legendary actors Siiri Angerkoski and Rauha Rentola, who worked on hundreds of Finnish films in the 1940s and 1950s, hardly ever had the starring role.
“They were basically filling in basic parts in the film: mums, aunts, waitresses, a woman at a party or in a scene. They needed a woman in the room to say a few lines,” says Outi Hupaniittu, a former post-doc researcher of Finnish film history at the University of Turku.
Image source: Yle