Though he has only directed three films in the last five years, Judd Apatow has become a quintessential name of modern comedy. When not offering up the likes of over-the-hill virgins and unplanned pregnancies, Apatow is a creative machine. On top of those three films, in the last five years he's busied himself with a handful of additional writing gigs plus over twenty producer credits.
It's because of Apatow that we've got funny men like Seth Rogen (who dates back to the 'Freaks and Geeks' days) and Jonah Hill on the big screen. He made Steve Carell a leading comedic star, and helped bring Paul Rudd out of the comedy shadows. But along with success and hand-crafting modern cinematic comedy, there has been a cloud of complaint about his one-note female characters, to the point that 'Knocked Up' star Katherine Heigl even called her breakout role "a little sexist."
But the tide seems to be turning. After the male-centric push of his earlier collaborations, Apatow has gotten involved with not one, but three notable female productions created by women -- 'Bridesmaids' with Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph, 'Business Trip' with wife Leslie Mann and the upcoming Lena Dunham series for HBO, 'Girls.' (And, one might also add, to a lesser degree, the upcoming Wain/Marino comedy 'Wanderlust.')
Could it be that a filmmaker is learning from his audience and directly filling the holes in his creative resume?