When it comes to diversity, Hollywood is having trouble practicing what it preaches.
The entertainment industry is failing spectacularly in its efforts to diversify its behind-the-camera talent, with a new study showing that the number of female and minority movie directors employed by the studios actually dropped in 2022.
The new report from the USC Annenberg’s s Inclusion Initiative found that of the 111 directors hired to make the 100 top-grossing movies of 2022, only nice percent were women — down from 12.7 percent in 2021. In 2019, the figure stood at 12 percent.
The number of ethnic minority movie directors in the top 100 also fell, from 27.3 percent in 2021 down to 20.7 percent in 2022.
The declines come as Hollywood continues to aggressively promote diversity to audiences through its movies and TV shows. Diverse casting is now commonplace — even in period European storylines — while gay and transgender characters are proliferating in children’s entertainment.
But for some reason, the industry is having trouble following its own lecture.
Among the worst offenders was the Walt Disney Co., which includes what was formerly known as 20th Century Fox. Walt Disney Studios didn’t hire any women directors for its 2022 releases, according to the study. Neither did Lionsgate, Paramount Pictures, or STX Entertainment.
Disney did better when it came to minority directors, with four movies in 2022 helmed by ethnic minorities, including Ryan Coogler, who directed Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Universal Pictures outperformed all other studios when it came to minority directors, with five of its 2022 theatrical releases helmed by non-white directors, including Jordan Peele’s Nope.
A diversity mandate has insinuated itself in nearly every aspect of Hollywood.
This month, NBC will air the Golden Globes after banishing the annual awards show last year because the organization behind the ceremony — the Hollywood Foreign Press Association — had no black voting members. Since then, the HFPA has diversified its ranks, recently announcing that its membership is now majority female and ethnic minority.
Pictured, clockwise: Directors Sam Raimi (“Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness”), Christopher McQuarrie (“Top Gun: Maverick”), Colin Trevorrow (“Jurassic World: Dominion”), and James Cameron (“Avatar: The Way of Water”).
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