This link, via Kottke.org, points out how few women/women films masses of human beings will shell out money for. An interesting tally:
Quick, name a few recent popular movies where the two top-billed stars are female.
Here‚Äôs a miscellaneous survey I just did, tallied by gender of top billed/second billed star:
M/M M/F F/M F/F 20 biggest movies of 2007 10 10 0 0 20 biggest movies of 2006 11 7 0 2 20 biggest movies of 2005 11 7 2 0 20 biggest movies of 2004 10 9 1 0 20 biggest movies since 1977 15 5 0 0 IMDb Top 20 of All Time 15 5 0 0
There were about 110 movies with a male lead and 5 with a female lead. Of the second-billed females, nearly all are written as love interests of the first-billed man. There were over sixty movies in the sample with two male stars top-billed. The only movies with two top-billed female roles, on the other hand, were The Devil Wears Prada and Scary Movie 4.
My cousin has been working on tallying (by hand!) all movies with two top-billed female stars. She reports that there are staggeringly few of them, and the roles fall mainly in two genres: mother-daughter bonding movies and horror films. Hollywood is not creating female heroes.