Entertainment site Deadline Hollywood learned a lesson this week: you’re not going to get away with writing an ignorant, tone-deaf piece about minorities while Twitter is around. Earlier this week, Deadline published a story that highlighted the increased diversity in the 2015 TV season – then they asked if it was “too much of a good thing.”
The piece relies on anonymous insiders who say the success of shows such as Empire, Jane the Virgin and Fresh Off the Boat have increased studios’ demand for “ethnic” actors. What’s the problem? According to the Deadline story, white actors are now increasingly losing roles to people of color.
The story sparked a quick backlash on Twitter.
Bordertown Writer Lalo Alcaraz Couldn’t Resist Making Jokes
— Mexican Judge (@laloalcaraz) March 25, 2015
Scandal Creator Shonda Rhimes was too Angry to Respond
1st Reaction:: HELL NO. Lemme take off my earrings, somebody hold my purse!
2nd Reaction: Article is so ignorant I can't even be bothered.
— shonda rhimes (@shondarhimes) March 25, 2015
Entertainment Weekly Writer Emily Nussbaum Thought WTF
Hey look the grossest possible reaction to a breakthrough TV year: http://t.co/uwWvnQF8Jb
— emily nussbaum (@emilynussbaum) March 25, 2015
TV Critic Mo Ryan Let Star Trek Do the Talking
Horrible Deadline article, you've left me no choice. I must go FULL FACEPALM, from ALL of Star Trek! Happy now??! pic.twitter.com/HC3FEY5CTW
— Mo Ryan (@moryan) March 25, 2015
And Journalist Jose Antonio Vargas Broke Down the Numbers
— Jose Antonio Vargas (@joseiswriting) March 25, 2015
Aside from the firestorm that blazed through Twitter, several TV diversity groups – American Indians in Film and Television, Asian Pacific American Media Coalition, NAACP Hollywood Bureau and National Hispanic Media Coalition – released a joint statement criticizing the Deadline piece:
“Shame on Deadline for giving a platform to the prejudices of a few Hollywood agents who, under the cloak of anonymity, revealed themselves to be among the entertainment industry gatekeepers reluctant to change their unfair and exclusionary practices and make way for progress.”