Top three films of 2017 all had female leads for first time in decades

Safeeyah Kazi
Queens of box office: Women dominate the silver screen: Warner Bros

The three most successful films of 2017 all boasted female leads for the first time in nearly 60 years.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Beauty and the Beast, and Wonder Woman were the highest-grossing films of the year at the US box office and all starred women as their main characters.

The latest instalment of the Star Wars franchise, stars Daisy Ridley as a strong character with a desire to learn the ways of the Jedi Forces.

Fairy-tale Beauty and the Best depicts Emma Watson as a fiery, independent woman, earning it a place in the top 10 highest grossing films of all time, prior to Star Wars’ latest edition.

Wonder Woman’s Gal Gadot took the crown as an unconquerable warrior who also twinned as a princess.

2017 is the first time female leads have climbed to the top three of box office movies in 59 years.

This last happened in 1958, with Mitzi Gaynor in South Pacific, Rosalind Russell in Auntie Mame and Elizabeth Taylor in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

The news comes after the wake of Hollywood’s sex scandal, accusing a host of the industry’s top players of sexual harassment, including Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey and Louis CK.

A new campaign, called Time’s Up, was launched on Monday and has been backed by 300 female actors, agents, writers, and producers in Hollywood, including Reese Witherspoon, Natalie Portman, Meryl Streep and Emma Stone.

The campaign aims to support women coming forward with allegations of abuse, whilst also promising to help provide legal funding in a bid to end workplace harassment.

An open letter in the New York Times read: “We particularly want to lift up the voices, power and strength of women working in low-wage industries where the lack of financial stability makes them vulnerable to high rates of gender-based violence and exploitation.

“The struggle for women to break in, to rise up the ranks and to simply be heard and acknowledged in male-dominated workplaces must end; time’s up on this impenetrable monopoly.”