Christian Ditter Q&A: ‘Girlboss’ director
“It’s a really fun, inspiring show,” director Christian Ditter says about his new comedy series “Girlboss.” “It’s inspiring for girls — and entertaining for guys.” The 13-episode first season releases on Netflix this Friday, April 21 and is an adaptation of the autobiography “#Girlboss” by American businesswoman Sophia Amoruso. The show is set in 2006 when Amoruso founded the Nasty Gal clothing retailer, with her part played by Britt Robertson, who currently recurs in Amazon’s “Casual” and previously starred in CBS’s “Under the Dome” with Dean Norris, who plays her father in “Girlboss.”
The only male executive producer for this female-centric series, Ditter admits, “I was often the only guy in the room, but it wasn’t a conscious choice.” Ditter knew showrunner Kay Cannon through his last film “How to Be Single,” in which Cannon played “Woman Giving Birth.” When Cannon went in during post-production to rerecord dialogue, she saw a rough cut of the beginning of the film and immediately sent Ditter the script for the first episode of “Girlboss,” which had just been picked up by Netflix.
Cannon and fellow executive producer Charlize Theron have been on the media circuit lately, discussing their difficulty in getting the show picked up with its feminine subject matter and title. Ditter joined after and says, “When I signed up for it, that wasn’t even part of my thought process or consideration because I just like to work with talented people and funny people.”
Ditter initially signed on to direct only the first three episodes but stayed on an executive producer and also directed the last two episodes of the season. On the Emmy ballot for Best Comedy Directing this year, Ditter will contend for the debut episode of the series.
In establishing the esthetic of the show, Ditter drew inspiration from Amoruso, whom Ditter says was “selling vintage fashion online, which a lot of people have done before her, but she was extraordinarily successful because she did it with a different spin — she added a style to it.” Ditter went into “Girlboss” asking, “How can we make the show the equivalent of what Sophia did for her business? How can we distinguish the show visually from all the other shows that are out there and make it attractive to watch [and look] like a movie?”