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Emmerdale to air all-female episode for International Women’s Day 2019

The episode will also be produced, directed and written by women

Sabrina Barr
Wednesday 03 October 2018 11:12 BST
The cast of Emmerdale at the National Television Awards at The O2 Arena on January 25, 2017
The cast of Emmerdale at the National Television Awards at The O2 Arena on January 25, 2017 (Getty)

ITV has announced that it’s going to be airing an all-female episode of Emmerdale to mark International Women’s Day 2019.

The episode, which will be a one-off special, will be produced, written and directed by women in addition to being lead exclusively be an all-female cast.

Jane Hudson, executive producer of the show, was speaking at an ITV press event when she made the announcement.

“We’re really excited about this, and really proud to be doing it,” she said.

“I think it’s the first time a soap has had an all-women team.

“It is International Women’s Day, so what we want to do for that episode is to have it produced by a female, written by a female, directed by a female, and the entire cast will be female, including all background artists.”

The announcement has received a mixed reaction, with some people praising Emmerdale for the decision.

“Lemme just womansplain something for you, fellas. For the first time, Emmerdale is being led by an all-female production team,” one person tweeted.

“Why not celebrate that with an episode dedicated to the women and written/directed/produced by women on International Woman’s Day #WhoRunTheWorld.”

However, others have predictably been less enthused by the idea.

“Assuming there will be an all-male episode coming too? No? Shocked!” another person commented.

“We need to promote fairness and equality, not highlight differences.”

In January this year, Celebrity Big Brother launched an all-female series in order to pay tribute to the 100th anniversary of some women winning the right to vote.

Earlier this year, a study conducted by Directors UK, a professional association of UK screen directors, found that the number of television episodes directed by a woman in the UK had fallen by almost three per cent between 2013 to 2016.

In comparison, the number of television episodes directed by a man had increased by approximately three per cent in the same time period.

In 2016, only 17.5 per cent of Emmerdale episodes were directed by a woman, which equates to around 54 episodes out of a total 308.

The all-female episode of Emmerdale will air on International Women’s Day on March 8 2019.

International Women’s Day has been recognised since the early 1900s and is now celebrated annually on a global scale as a means of celebrating the extraordinary achievements of women.

In 1975, International Women’s Day was celebrated for the first time by the United Nations.

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