Methodology, Skills and Professional Benefits Participants Participants' Comments MEDICI Coordinator and Head of Studies «The 12 Labours of Hercules» Report of the Reports – Workshops 1 to 4

Reports Previous Workshops

Seventh Workshop – 27 to 29 September 2017 – Finstadjordet, Norway

Module 4 – Is diversity essential for reaching the audiences? Are there tools for evaluating the diversity of audiences? 

Introduction

Today it is the viewer who decides what he/she wants, where and when to watch. His/her choice depends on personal taste, culture, age, desires… Hence, the funded projects should provide a diversified offer that would meet the diverse demands of fragmented audiences.

Or, in other words:

Case study 1 / Diversity in film and why does it matter?

Ellen Tejle – Fanzingo Production Company, Cinema Rio–Stockholm
See also Ellen Tejle’s presentation (PDF)

Challenges 

1 The study called “text study” showed how we judge people differently when participants in an experiment were asked to read a text and then evaluate it while the text sometimes bore a female, and sometimes a male signature. Those texts that were signed by female names got comments like “messy”, “unsympathetic”, “unwise”, “don’t understand what she is trying to say?” Those signed by male names received only comments like “well written”, “thoughtful”, “compelling”, and “smart”. The results were the same as they were 30 years ago. The experiment showed the same results in Sweden as well.

How can film industry and film funds contribute to making the world more equal? 

The current situation

Actions

Conclusions

Questions from the audience

Has the introduction of the A-rate stamp created any changes in the way scriptwriters and filmmakers think and work?
Yes. Both scriptwriters and directors started “controlling themselves” and thinking about whether they have two female characters sitting in the same room, etc. Some film institutes also started returning the scripts for a rewrite if they lack female characters.
What does Sweden do to improve the diversity other than gender? 
There are a lot of LGBT films. But we still do not know how to measure diversity where it cannot be measured quantitatively, or how to deal with diversity behind the camera. The funds should be more active in solving it. 
Can the Bechdel-Wallace test be applied to male characters? 
Yes, and all the films we tested pass the test. 

3. Outcomes of the group discussion

What kind of responsibility do film funds have in erasing the gender and other stereotypes in films? 

But,

Much information that can be useful in measuring diversity exists in applications but is confidential and we cannot publish it. It would be illegal and against the discrimination law in some countries to ask about the ethnicity, sexual orientation, etc. 

Case study 2 - Diversity in Film Funding

Presented by Yoav Abramovich, Deputy Director-General of The Rabinovich Foundation for the Arts (Israel) 
www.rabinovichfoundation.org.il/index.php/english
See also Yoav Abramovich’s presentation (pdf)

Introduction

How do we deal with challenges within the film industry?

We are trying to take the complex diversity of Israel into consideration as much as possible when financing films. We support films from all religious and ethnic groups, within both Arab and Jewish populations.

The Cinema Law

Challenges

Examples of best practices in other countries

The Role of Public Film Funds in the Future

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