2011 kids’ movie titles feature 11 male stars

Disney’s male execs famously switched a movie title from ‘Rapunzel’ to ‘Tangled’ to conceal the female star. But in 2011, I count 11 titles that refer to the movie’s male star including Adventures of Tintin, Arthur’s Christmas, Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Kung Fu Panda, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Puss in Boots, Winnie the Pooh, Rango, Happy Feet 2, Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, and The Zookeeper.

Male execs justify this blatant sexism by repeatedly (and I mean repeatedly) stating: boys won’t go to see movies about girls but girls are AOK seeing movies about boys. So you see, this Hollywood preference isn’t about sexism; it’s just biology. What’s a movie mogul to do about that?

OK, in what other instance do the preferences of five year olds dictate the choices of CEOs of multinational companies? They don’t. Ever.

Movies star boys for one reason– because men make the movies! Men are the producers, directors, and the stars. Sexism in kids movies has nothing to do with children and everything to do with grown-ups, particularly Ed Catmull, John Lasseter, Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Johnny Depp, Jim Carey, Antonio Banderas, Hank Azaria, Paul Reubens and on and on and on.

If women were running Hollywood by the same kind of majority, they’d be shrugging their shoulders and get quoted in the LA Times saying: “Girls just won’t spend their allowance on movies if we put a boy in the title. Go figure.”

See the sexist gallery of 2011 kids movie posters here.

Girls gone missing: kids’ movie posters in 2011

The year is 2011. You are a seven year old girl looking out the back seat car window. Unless you catch a glimpse of ‘Hoodwinked 2’ or ‘Judy Moody’ these are the pictures you see. In your world, boys are front and center. You are a sidekick or just not there at all.

Update: I’ve updated Reel Girl’s Gallery of Girls Gone Missing From Kids Films in 2011 to include posters that had not been released over the summer when I initially posted the gallery.

I also, sadly, added Harry Potter. I love Harry Potter and love Hermione, but it is true, as commenters pointed out, the movie is clearly Harry’s quest, Harry is the star. The newly added “Hugo” also has a strong girl character, but token strong girls are not enough. Harry Potter and Hugo are also both titled for the male star, whereas Disney execs famously switched the title of Rapunzel to Tangled specifically not to highlight the female star. It’s amazing to me that this blatant sexism goes on in media marketed to little kids.

When kids see, again and again and again, that girls are relegated to supporting roles, both genders learn that girls are less important than boys. This is a terrible lesson for a new generation of children to be learning.

Movies included in the Gallery are ‘appropriate’ for little kids. My three daughters are ages 2 – 8.

 Disney's Winnie the Pooh movie poster