During the 2014-15 TV season, 128 directors got their first shot at helming an episodic TV show. Of those, only one is an African-American woman, two are Latina and none is Asian-American. According to the DGA’s latest data, 18 of those first-timers are Caucasian females, while 83.6% of the jobs went to men. But the job market was particularly squeezed for minority women. Here’s how the numbers break down:
- Women of color make up nearly 19% of the U.S. population, according to the latest Census Bureau figures, but got only 2.3% of the first-time episodic TV directing jobs. If they’d been hired in proportion to their makeup of the population, they would have gotten 24 of the jobs – eight times more than they did.
- African-American women: about 7% of the total U.S. population, 0.78% of the jobs; in proportion that would be nine jobs instead of one.
- Hispanic females: more than 8.6% of the population, 1.5% of the first-time directing jobs; in proportion that would be 11 jobs instead of two.
- Asian-American women make up more than 2.5% of the U.S. population and Native American women 0.6%, but none of either got a rookie helming gig.
As a group, women make up 50.8% of the population but only 16.4% of the first-time directing in episodic TV last season. If hired in proportion to the population, they would have gotten 65 of the jobs – three-times more than the 21 they actually got.
“The hiring of new episodic directors is a significant area of opportunity as it can impact the overall diversity of the hiring pool over time,” the DGA said. “However, hiring of female first-time episodic directors went down in the 2014-15 season – from 20% to 16% – indicating that even when it comes to new directors, those with responsibility for hiring are perpetuating the status quo.”
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