Jane Campion

Photo: CNN

Jane Campion, The Power of the Dog director, expressed her regrets for comparing her job in an industry dominated by males with the experiences of tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams. She did it while accepting an award for the best director during the ceremony.

The statement said, “I made a thoughtless comment equating what I do in the film world with all that Serena Williams and Venus Williams have achieved. I did not intend to devalue these two legendary Black women and world-class athletes.” 

“The fact is the Williams sisters have, actually, squared off against men on the court (and off), and they have both raised the bar and opened doors for what is possible for women in this world. The last thing I would ever want to do is minimize remarkable women. I love Serena and Venus. Their accomplishments are titanic and inspiring. Serena and Venus, I apologize and completely celebrate you,” she added. 

Venus and Serena Williams are the children of the Williams family patriarch portrayed by Will Smith in King Richard

Campion said her adoration to “the guys” in her almost all-male category before commenting about the Williams sisters in front of the audience. 

“Serena and Venus, you are such marvels,” she stated, “however, you do not play against the guys like I have to.” 

Just a while back, Campion also spoke out about another Hollywood personality who slammed her position in the industry when she replied to award-winning actor Sam Elliot’s talk-about comments about her proficiency to direct The Power of the Dog as a woman from New Zealand. 

The movie follows the American West with unusual themes, including aging masculinity and commodification.

“I’m sorry, he was being a little bit of a b-tch, and, I’m sorry to say it, he’s not a cowboy, he’s an actor,” said Campion on the red carpet at the DGA Awards. 

“The West is a myth exposed. There’s a lot of room on the range. I think it’s a little bit sexist because you think about the number of amazing westerns that were made in Spain by Sergio Leone. I consider myself a creator, and I think he sees me as a woman or something lesser first, and I don’t appreciate that,” she added.