The Fourth-Wave Feminist Biopic: Representation, Production and Reception. 01/11/2022 - 31/10/2023


The #MeToo hashtag has been impossible to overlook since actress Alyssa Milano first tweeted it in 2017. It gained widespread attention in the aftermath of sexual abuse allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. At that point, Weinstein was a co-chair of Miramax, a film production company known for its popular biographical films. The prestigious yet heavily understudied biopic genre presents an ideal case through which to thoroughly examine the film industry's reaction to the #MeToo movement and the wider fourth wave of feminism. The proposed project's general research objective is to investigate how the sociocultural context of fourth-wave feminism relates to the (1) representation, (2) production and (3) reception of contemporary English-language biopics (2010–2022). The project's main hypothesis proposes that, over the last decade, many biopics have been characterised by innovative storylines and representations of gender identities, in which empowerment, collectivity, intersectionality and similar notions are central. These elements have been shaped by and, at the same time, help shape fourth-wave feminism. This trend has led to the emergence of what I call the 'fourth-wave feminist biopic'. The proposed research project links the fields of biopic studies and contemporary feminist studies, innovatively combining traditional analyses of gender representation in film with production and reception research.


Research team(s)

Project type(s)

  • Research Project