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Gemma Chan Says Hollywood Needs More Behind-The-Camera Diversity

Hollywood’s diversity problem goes far beyond casting choices, Gemma Chan said.

The ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ star can be seen in the September issue of British Vogue (edited by Meghan Markle) as one of the 15 ‘Forces For Change’. In the interview, Chan explained that the industry is not as hospitable on projects involving minorities or women as it should be.

“I know the perception is that it is a lot easier to make movies from or about minorities or women, but it is actually still difficult,” she said. “I would like to see a real increase in the diversity of people who are able to make decisions.”

The actress, who is an outspoken advocate for a more diverse representation in the industry, then pointed out that “only a handful of people in Hollywood” have the power to put projects on the go, and only a small proportion are women or minorities .

“Until we tackle these systemic imbalances completely in the chain, we still have a lot of work to do.”

Indeed, behind the camera and beyond, Hollywood still has a lot to do, even on the playing field. A Hollywood diversity report from 2019 showed that from 2011 to 2017 only 1.3 out of every 10 film directors were people of color. The same research also showed that women and individuals of color remain considerably under-represented among makers of television series. Looking at broadcast script shows from the 2016-2017 season, 9.4 percent of the makers of the show were people of color, while a proportional view requires that those of color had a share of 39.4 percent.

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