The Lego Movie filmmaker promises more 'strong females' in the sequel

It has made over $400 million at the international box-office already, but the director of The Lego Movie sequel Chris McKay said fans have plenty to look forward with the second film - especially female fans.
The animated hit features feisty femme Wyldstyle (voiced by Elizabeth Banks) as one of the central characters, but McKay believes there needs to be more gender equality next time around.
'I’m not sure our movie passes the Bechdel test entirely and I think that it's important,' he told MailOnline.

'For us we have a lot of producers that were female who had concerns and we were always constantly saying to ourselves: 'Are we just a bunch of white guys sitting here making this movie from our own myopic point of view?
'We were constantly responding to that question and that helped us make Wyldstyle a better character and Unikitty a more interesting character.

'I think it's forcing us to look at how we make a sequel and turn that into something that's more powerful and special.'
The US filmmaker served as the animation co-director on The Lego Movie, before being given the pat on the shoulder by Warner Bros. studios to direct the inevitable follow-up.

Having worked in the industry for over a decade, McKay is more than aware of the gender imbalance in Hollywood and sited the Bechdel test as a relevant benchmark.

The test was named after American cartoonist Alison Bechdel who set the criteria for a work of fiction to pass as needing: at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man.

In a new study examining 1615 films released from 1990 to 2013, it showed films that passed the Bechdel test were just as profitable as those that didn't.
Cate Blanchett addressed Hollywood's notion female-led movies weren't as popular in March when she accepted the best actress Oscar for Blue Jasmine.
'Those in the industry who are foolishly clinging to the idea that female films, with women in the centre are niche experiences. They are not,” she said in her speech.
'Audiences want to see them. In fact they earn money.'

McKay agrees with her, and points to the success of recent female led films like The Hunger Games franchise and Frozen as evidence that they hold up at the box-office.
'Sexism is something that's part of our culture and something that we need to adjust,' he said.

'People, when they make movies, they have a responsibility to at least examine that.
'Obviously you have to look at the kind of story you’re trying to tell and the theme, but people don't underestimate the value of hard, cool female characters who have their own agency.
'That’s the thing we’re not doing enough as filmmakers.'


I wish more animation studios pointed out their shortcomings.