A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem sheds light on the continued fight to end the gender pay gap prevalent throughout the National Football League. For over 50 years, the NFL has employed cheerleaders—women who are lifelong athletes expected to both maintain a peak physical condition and fulfill extreme beauty standards. Many of these athletes have been historically underpaid, with some earning as little as $5 an hour, while others are never paid a salary at all. A Woman's Work chronicles the journeys of cheerleaders from the Oakland Raiders and the Buffalo Bills, each of whom put their careers on the line to take legal action and fight for fair pay. MORE
Through the stories of two women in particular—Lacy, a former cheerleader for the Oakland Raiders and mother of three, and Maria, a former Buffalo Bills cheerleader, both of whom take up the grueling fight for fair pay against the NFL—the film paints a vivid picture of gender inequality at the heart of America’s favorite pastime. A Woman’s Work features interviews with former cheerleaders—some who have filed lawsuits against and others who stand staunchly in support of the NFL—their family members, and labor lawyers.
Yu Gu is a multinational filmmaker and visual artist whose award-winning films explore the clash between individuals and systems of power. Yu co-directed the feature documentary Who is Arthur Chu?, which won two festival grand jury awards and was broadcast on World Channel in 2018. The first 3-channel short documentary from Her Interior Migrations project, documenting the memories of migrant workers in Canada, premiered at the Art Gallery of Ontario and participated in The Public – Land and Body installation in Toronto. She was a directing fellow with Firelight Media and Film Independent and was awarded Best Emerging Filmmaker at the 2019 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. Yu received her MFA in film production from the University of Southern California and a BA from the University of British Columbia. She is a Lecturer at Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film & Media Arts and USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. Yu is a proud member of Brown Girls Doc Mafia, Film Fatales, and the Asian American Documentary Network. LESS