Easterseals Southern California has teamed once again with IMDbPro for the latest phase of their ongoing work to support and create visibility and opportunities for entertainment professionals in the disability community.
This marks the second consecutive year IMDbPro is sponsoring the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge, which is currently underway. The weeklong filmmaking contest gives filmmakers – with and without disabilities – the opportunity to collaborate to tell unique stories that showcase disability in its many forms via short films. The challenge will be judged by a wide selection of influential voices within the entertainment industry, including IMDb Founder and CEO Col Needham.
Finalists will be announced on Thursday, April 29, with the virtual Awards Ceremony set to take place on Thursday, May 6. IMDbPro provides winners with a one-year membership and the opportunity for their film to be featured in a video playlist on the homepage of IMDb.
IMDbPro and Easterseals have hosted sessions with entertainment professionals in the disability community to be sure they are optimizing their IMDb profiles. The site provides professionals with the option to self-identify as a member of the disability community, as part of a suite of tools to manage and showcase their IMDb profile.
Additionally, using the new IMDbPro Discover tool, members can find other professionals to hire and collaborate with, including talent who have self-identified as a member of the disability community as well as those who were finalists and winners of the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge. IMDbPro Discover will continue to be optimized based on feedback provided by Easterseals and other professionals in the disability community. This further moves the needle when it comes to the inclusion of the disability community.
“We are so thrilled to continue our work with the IMDbPro team,” said Nic Novicki, founder of the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge. “It is so important to have collaborators like IMDbPro who understand the importance of visibility for underrepresented communities and are taking the necessary steps to highlight those who have not been seen or heard as often as they should. We hope that by utilizing the new IMDbPro Discover tool and other powerful IMDbPro features, creators will be able to more authentically portray the disabled community by hiring the incredibly talented wealth of actors, writers, directors and others who know the experience firsthand.”
“By making it easier for decision-makers to find talent from the disability community and other under-represented groups, IMDbPro provides opportunities to accelerate the entertainment industry’s push for greater diversity, equity and inclusion,” said Matt Kumin, Head of IMDbPro. “We are pleased to continue collaborating with Easterseals Southern California and are grateful for their ongoing commitment and leadership in supporting entertainment professionals in the disability community.”
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