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Filmmaking Essentials: Diversity In Hollywood, Diversity In Film, Diversity In Television

Are you concerned about Hollywood’s hiring
practices; diversity in Hollywood, diversity in film, diversity in television? Do you see the topic of diversity and inclusion
as a threat or to use as a weapon? Do you see the struggle for racial and gender
parity in America? The truth is, while Hollywood, especially
in the television end has made more strides to be inclusive of those who are of different
ethnic backgrounds and sexual preferences, and be more inclusive of women in the casting
and green lighting of productions, there’s still a ways to go. I’m going to give you a challenge to make
your voice matter. As someone who is disabled and labeled a minority,
I have seen firsthand in the Hollywood trenches how the arguments made by some are based on
emotion instead of figures, and how those same figures don’t cover the whole spectrum
of productions and job titles. And for young aspiring content creators and
filmmakers joining the ranks of The New Hollywood Generation, this directly applies to you. All of that coming up. Welcome to ‘Hollywood, Unapologetic!’ My name is Orlando Delbert. I wanted to speak a little bit about Filmmaking
Essentials: Hollywood’s Hiring Practices, The Struggle For Racial And Gender Parity
In America, Diversity In Hollywood, Diversity In Film, Diversity In Television, And What
Are You Doing About It, and how it applies to The New Hollywood Generation. Yeah, it’s a lot of stuff. I should mention before we get into it, I
first wrote about some of what we’re about to touch upon, success in filmmaking, in life,
and how it applies as part of the New Hollywood Generation when I was writing, Pollyanna’s
Tear Soaked Battlefields of Hollywood: A Survival Guide Against the Cynicism and the Hypocritical. We want to know your questions, comments,
and suggestions you may have. Please write them below. Leave a “thumbs up” if you like what you
see. Make sure to click on the subscribe button. Click that bell so that you don’t miss anything. Be sure to check out the videos in the playlist,
“New to Film Production? Start Here!” Be sure to watch all of the way through. We’re going to speak about a lot of things
as part of being best prepared. Remember, preparation is the key to you and
your project’s success. Ready? I first wrote about the lack of diversity
in Hollywood’s hiring practices about ten years ago in my book. My first video in this series was on this
topic, which was around the time the Academy Awards received a lot of attention for the
choices in their nominations, which in turn saw a surge in the Oscars Not So White ( #OscarsNotSoWhite
) hashtag hitting social media. When I decided to revisit the subject of diversity
in the entertainment industry, in particular the film and television side, I went on YouTube
to take a look at what came up in the search tool. To my surprise, two videos popped out; “Diversity”
Is a Weapon Against White People, with 263,000 views, and 7 Shows That Have Too Many People
Of Color, with 855,000 views. Based on the titles alone, it was clear that
the producer’s intentions were about having less of a constructive conversation about
hiring practices, which has been the baseline for much of this ongoing conversation and
of inclusion, than it was about click bait or about propagating hate. It’s also clear that these two videos, and
others like them add to the challenge for racial and gender parity in America. And unfortunately, especially during these
disquiet and disruptive political times in the United States, some take advantage of
what should be a forward thinking topic to bring more of the populous together, use it
as a weapon to incite hatred and push everyone further apart. The point of the conversation on diversity
in the film and television industry has always been about the inclusion of those who are
of different ethnic backgrounds, different sexes and sexual preferences, different religious
beliefs, and of those with disabilities, and everything else that too often has a negative
label slapped on it by close-mindedness, than it has been about any attack on white people. Sure, there will be some who may put any type
of spin on it based on their personal experiences, agendas, and in some cases narrow-mindedness. Some just may be racist pricks, or just Internet
trolls looking to stir shit up simply because they can hide behind the Internet’s anonymous
nature. But the reality is simple; Hollywood has and
will always be about making the most money the quickest, period. And to do that, they resort to the formulas
that have worked for them in the past, proven over and over again for decades. When so many build their opinions based on
emotions alone, they lose track, or may just not be aware of the hundreds of millions of
dollars that are at potential risk when producing any major motion picture, as well as all of
the money to be made for decades to come. The entertainment industry is an industry. Today, however, things have changed, largely
in television. That has a lot to do with the way budgets
are put together, with an eye on television affiliate fees, which by the way is the primary
revenue stream for television; multi-billion dollar a year revenue maker for the networks. And the fact a broader range of creative talents
have stepped up to produce their own content, are fighting for racial and gender parity
in America. They have helped open more doors than ever
before. While all too many are quick to voice their
opinions online from an emotional viewpoint or just downright distain towards a certain
director or group of actors in the public eye. But unless you have sat in the meetings where
the conversations are largely about tens and hundreds of millions of dollars at a time
in play, and have had an in-depth working knowledge of the Hollywood backstory, and
have seen first hand the business practices of the studios and networks, it’s difficult
to make a positive argument to build upon to push an industry forward. I say this not to discount anyone’s views
or opinions in any way. I’m saying this because the only way to
contribute constructively and to move any idea forward is to have accurate data and
building a case based on that data. Yes, there is bias in regards to someone’s
race, sex, age, sexual preference, and if they are disabled in the many corners of the
entertainment industry. But the one thing that has been consistent
is Hollywood’s love affair with the color green. The handfuls of bigots in this industry are
in no way a reflection of everyone in the “business of show”. To think that is quite small-mindedness and
limiting of your own potential. And that is the point. Far too many people are busy pointing fingers
and inciting hatred towards others, instead of offering a positive solution, or at least
showing a willingness of a dialogue to move any issue forward. Does my speaking about Hollywood’s hiring
practices, diversity in Hollywood especially in television, and how some use this topic
to weaponise his or her own agendas against the struggle for racial and gender parity
in America make sense? If it does, write hashtag New Hollywood Generation
in the comments below. That’s #NewHollywoodGeneration. Information from the Ralph J. Bunche Center
for African Studies at UCLA and other groups have created reports based on comparisons
between top theatrical motion picture releases, television programming, and other distribution
platforms with how they relate to the make up of our country’s populace. These are great and powerful tools, but all
too often what hasn’t received enough focus is how the networks and studios make their
business decisions and what they are based upon. Not too mention the many other productions
that don’t fall under the scrutiny of these groups, because they are not the top box office
grossers. Plus my decades of working in and around the
offices and post-production end of the industry, I can tell you most of the numbers spoken
about don’t reflect the majority involved being women of different ethnicities. Even with the attack towards the motion picture
academy in recent years, many did not take the time to learn the Academy Awards are a
representation of motion pictures only, and not of the motion picture business. They are two very different subjects. Nor did many take into account it takes years
for any production to get made. This is important to point out because the
thing that many aren’t addressing is the simple fact that Hollywood does and will always
follow the money. To put it simply, the expenses involved in
many Hollywood motion pictures today are so high; the business machines simply want to
minimize their financial risk. This is why you see so many of the same types
of projects, remakes, sequels, prequels, re-imaginings, and even the fracturing of existing brands
in the pursuit of the commodification of Hollywood. This is also why you see a lot of the same
talent featured on screen, even to play characters of ethnicities they don’t fit. These casting decisions occur because the
safe bet for the studios and network’s financial return is on someone who has made money for
them consistently, who is popular now, and more bankable globally for their target demographics. These same decisions are also based in part
with pre-existing brands celebrities are already tied to. This is not about white privilege or anything
else other than about money. So how do content creators get past this decision
making process by the motion picture studios and television networks? Like I’ve mentioned earlier, some creatives
have decided to produce their own content to have their voices heard, and to offer opportunities
for those of like minds, and to fight for racial and gender parity in America. Plus with each production made, it offers
yet another opportunity to have a positive dialogue. And this is all part of you and I having to
pay our dues. Yep! You and I have to pay our dues over and over
again. This is something a lot of people don’t
want to acknowledge, nor even accept. This is something seen more and more with
young people, wanting the world but not continuously putting the work in, nor willing to be flexible
to opportunities as they arrive. And this mindset makes it easier for other’s
to have a negative influence on you and feed into the high amount of negativity we see
today in this world. And thanks to social media, many now have
a voice and like to stir shit up simply because they can. These individuals are a far cry from offering
any kind of productive contributions to move any issue forward. They just want to entice hatred because it’s
much easier to do than it is to work for something for everyone’s common good. Anyone who may be different in their eyes
is all too often seen as as a threat to their way of life. And in saying this, I have a challenge for
you! My challenge to you is if you are concerned
about the hiring practices, opportunities, and the struggle for racial and gender parity
in America, what are you going to do about it? If you are concerned abut the hiring practices
of the Hollywood studios and networks, and how inclusive they are to those of different
ethnic backgrounds, different sexes and sexual preferences, different religious beliefs,
and those with disabilities, what are you going to do about it? You know the television networks and motion
picture studios will follow the money, how will you tap into that? All of the points made by so many on these
issues, regardless of the validity, miss the simple point of we all need to create the
projects we want, hire the people we want, and base it on the individual’s talents
and willingness to be inclusive of one another. This should not to be based on just someone’s
ethnic background, sex, age, sexual preference, the shoes they’re wearing today or the car
they drive, because for us to get beyond this, we have to work as one. It truly is that simple. Our roles as content creators come with a
responsibility because many identify with Hollywood as being the face of America. Really give that some thought. Many cultures around the world identify with
the products offered by the Hollywood machine as a strong representation of whom we are
and what we’re about. So, doesn’t it make sense to create the
projects and the roles of true substance that are of a positive voice, not just because
any group of people may be considered marginalized by some? To achieve true diversity, we have to encourage
one another to be inclusive of one another. And I say inclusive, not tolerant. They have very different meanings. And being inclusive is also having a willingness
to have a dialogue that is far greater than just hiring a certain director or set of actors. It also has to do with hiring those behind
the camera, the production assistants, the grips and electrical men and women, the writers,
everyone. Every member of The New Hollywood Generation,
yes, this means you too, is of value because of his or her willingness to be part of this
inclusive journey. You and I are of value and are part of a larger
culture each and every one of us represents. One more thing, as part of The New Hollywood
Generation, others just like you are asking the same questions of themselves. You are not alone. We’re all in it together. If you enjoyed the content, please SUBSCRIBE
and click on the bell to know when we have more for you. And more episodes are coming. Please share with someone you know who may
find what we spoke about today beneficial. LIKE if you like what you see? DISLIKE if you don’t. And let us hear from you. Are you going to use what we discussed today? YES or NO? Let us know in the comments below. Please consider what I offered you today,
and consider what your role is as a new generation of content creators. And feel free to take advantage of other members
in the New Hollywood Generation community. We are all here to grow together and to help
one another. We have a strong group on Twitter. Come join the New Hollywood Generation, and
meet some fellow filmmakers and content creators. As members of the New Hollywood Generation,
take the time to assess what your short-term and long-term goals are. Make your plan. Take a breath. Go for it! You can do it once you believe you can. Are you ready for the challenge? If you’re looking for filmmaking for beginners,
filmmaking 101, and for some filmmaking tips on how to want to be a filmmaker, make sure
to click on the subscribe button. Click that bell so that you don’t miss anything. Looking for how to filmmaking essentials? Be sure to check out the videos in the playlist,
“New to Film Production? Start Here!” Think of this channel as a film crash course,
or filmmaking crash course, and an introduction to filmmaking entrepreneurship, to build the
skills needed well beyond just how to succeed Hollywood, and beyond whatever discussion
other how to film school, how to indie filmmaking, in general how to film industry channels don’t
talk about. The “why’s” you truly need to know,
to help you grow as a thought leader in life, the entertainment industry, and how it applies
as part of the New Hollywood Generation is in this video series and in the Pollyanna’s
Tear Soaked Battlefields of Hollywood: A Survival Guide Against the Cynicism and the Hypocritical,
series of books. Links below. Remember, preparation is the key to you and
your project’s success. Ready?


  1. HOLLYWOOD UNAPOLOGETIC! - Filmmaking Essentials Author

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