According to a recent report published by Statista, a leading provider of market and consumer data, in 2020, 74.6 percent of movie directors of theatrical films were white, while just 25.4 percent were people of color. This statistic indicates the lack of behind-the-camera diversity in Hollywood. Moreover, it reveals the root of the problem: a lack of access that filmmakers of color have compared to their white counterparts. Top executives in Hollywood, predominantly white, decide which stories are funded, which actors are cast, and which stories are ignored. Research shows that jobs in the industry are mostly given to the acquaintances of insiders or members of extended networks. So, when most of the decision-makers in the industry are of a particular race and industry access depends on who a person knows, it becomes difficult for minority voices to get an opportunity to tell their stories. As a result, Black, Latino, and Asian film professionals struggle to build and sustain a career in Film and TV.
Advancing Diversity with Access to Technology
It is no secret that filmmakers of color have struggled to thrive in the industry. Even when given an opportunity to produce their films, many have failed to reach large audiences because of the lack of Hollywood support. The introduction of digital technology in the film industry, however, has shattered conventional barriers. Technology has had a significant impact on how content is produced and distributed, and it is this impact that has provided an opportunity for increased diversity in Hollywood. Filmmakers can now gain access to funding online, promote their content on social media, and even reach out to large audiences on video platforms like YouTube.
Promotion and Distribution
Technology has made it easier for filmmakers of color to reach a broad audience through digital promotion and distribution on the internet. Digitally designed movies do not have to be distributed through conventional methods, so filmmakers no longer have to depend on a big budget or spending plan to get their content in front of a large crowd. They use the internet. These days, a film can take off on YouTube and eventually bring significant opportunities for the filmmaker who created it.
Productions Now in the Palm of the Hand
The issue of funding has always been a big hurdle for any filmmaker and especially filmmakers of color. But with the introduction of digital cameras and affordable film equipment, the cost of movie production has become a bit more affordable. Now, mobile phones can be used to craft stories and reach thousands of people. Recently, Apple just released their iPhone 13 series. The iPhone 13 Pro, which has a unique feature known as “cinematic mode,” allows users to record videos with a shallow depth of field and add beautiful focus transitions for a cinema-grade look. With mobile devices like these, filmmakers on a budget can create great content without compromising quality.
Editing and Post-Production
Technology has also made post-production easier and affordable. Before the introduction of digital cameras, post-production required a lot of specialized and expensive expertise to execute. But now, a person with little or no professional training in digital filming can cut and join clips on their personal computer and create meaningful content. Software like Adobe Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro is easy to learn and can be quickly accessed online. With this kind of technology, filmmakers who can’t afford to pay for the services of a professional editor can edit their content themselves. Products like Koji Advance, Magic Bullet Film, FilmConvert, Visioncolor Impulz, and many similar products provide LUTs for any emerging filmmaker to quickly create quality colors without a colorist.
The Rise of Diversity on Streaming Platforms
Streaming platforms like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon have allowed viewers to watch their favorite movies whenever and wherever they want. This has greatly influenced the kind of content being watched and demanded. Research has shown that, as the demand for streaming services increases, more stories from filmmakers of color are being shown to large audiences. For instance, an analysis of streaming hubs featuring Black stories reveals that over 56% of the featured films have a Black director or writer and 53% of TV shows have a Black creator. Also, on further investigation, it was discovered that about three-quarters of the TV shows featured in Netflix’s ‘Black Lives Matter’ hub have a Black creator.
Access to Funding and Film Grants
Filmmakers of color in the industry usually have a hard time securing funding for their projects. While black directors like Jordan Peele, Ryan Coogler, and Barry Jenkins have enjoyed massive success in recent years with their Get Out, Black Panther, and Moonlight movies, many filmmakers of color still struggle to land deals for their stories. However, these days filmmakers can get film grants or secure funding for their projects online. In addition, institutes like Black Public Media and The Sundance offer fundi\ng for completion-level projects and distribute media content from members of underrepresented communities.
Online Learning Resources
Technology has made it possible for people to access education platforms with ease. Filmmaking courses can readily be accessed online, and aspiring filmmakers can learn from the comfort of their homes. To hone their skills, aspiring filmmakers can access the rudiments of filmmaking from professionals in the industry.
The Diversity Production Pro Offer’s Community Support
The internet makes it possible for filmmakers from any part of the world to share their work and experiences with other people within split seconds. The Diversity Production Pro has an extensive film community that provides a network for people who work in the film industry and are beginning or enhancing their careers with our training and education courses. Whether you’re taking a master class or workshop; or active on our community boards, the DPP offers a great way to connect with and learn from – or alongside – other professionals in the film industry. The Diversity Production Pro’s diverse creative, collaborative community connects film professionals through masterclasses, workshops, and networking, and more. A technical arts education online platform that guides students and instructors through technical trades and film production curriculum created by industry and education professionals for learners of all ages. Students achieve mastery of film production techniques as well as complete safety and job certification training to qualify for trades crafts employment in the industry. The DPP also offers a job board that provides a directory for connecting film arts, crafts, and trades professionals who display their experience, badges, and course completion certifications with the industry. Whether you’re taking a master class or workshop; or active on our community boards, the DPP offers a great way to connect with and learn from – or alongside – other professionals in the film industry. Our community hub provides a network for people who work in the film industry and are beginning or enhancing their careers with our training and education courses.