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Posted Saturday, May 12, 2007
Hollywood writers still mostly white men: study
By Reuters

LOS ANGELES, May 9, 2007 (Reuters) - White men continue to dominate Hollywood screenwriting despite efforts to open up the industry to women and minorities, the union representing film and television writers said in a report on Wednesday.

The Writers Guild of America, West, found that while more than 30 percent of the U.S. population is nonwhite, less than 10 percent of television writers employed between 1999 and 2005 were nonwhite.

Lack of ethnic diversity among writers, directors and others in the creative community has long been the subject of complaints from civil rights groups such as the NAACP.

In 2000, U.S. television networks NBC, CBS, ABC and Fox unveiled plans to boost minority hiring.

But the Writers Guild report predicts the situation will worsen before it gets better, in part because of the recent merger of the UPN and WB television networks into the new CW.

That move resulted in the cancellation of minority-themed sitcoms that employed a disproportionate share of minority television writers.

In the film business, the share of minority writers was 6 percent in 2005, unchanged since 1999.

Women held 25 percent of the overall industry's writing jobs, the report said. In TV, women were employed in 27 percent of the writing positions. In film, the figure was 19 percent, up only 1 percent from 1999. Reuters/Nielsen

Copyright © 2007 Reuters Limited

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