Sir Lenny Henry has urged the BBC and other traditional broadcasters to follow Netflix's lead in casting actors to represent Britain's ethnic diversity.
The 62-year-old actor and comedian, who has been on our screens for forty years, said he still feels “very lonely” in the industry as someone with a minority background.
In his new book, which explores issues of race and diversity on British television, Sir Lenny warned the BBC that it could lose black and Asian viewers to on-demand streaming services that "better portray their lives," The Times reported.
The co-founder of Comic Relief wrote: "If British broadcasters don't tackle the gray rhino of diversity now, they run the risk of losing large parts of their audience forever."
Sir Lenny Henry, 62, has urged the BBC and other traditional broadcasters to follow Netflix's lead in casting actors to represent Britain's ethnic diversity
He told how one in five Britons will come from black, Asian or ethnic minorities by 2031.
Sir Lenny added that research had shown that this segment of society viewed more on-demand streaming services than others, believing that the programs "portray their lives better" than terrestrial broadcasters like The BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5 and ITV.
In his new book Access All Areas: The Diversity Manifesto for Television and Beyond, co-written by Marcus Ryder, an expert on media diversity, the actor calls for diversity in all aspects of television, on-screen and behind-the-camera published on Thursday by Faber.
Bridgerton on Netflix is based on Julia Quinn's bestselling novels and follows the depicted romance between Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) and Simon Basset (Regé-Jean Page)
Bridgerton portrays King George III's wife as black based on a controversial theory that she was of African descent. Queen Charlotte is played by British actress Golda Rosheuvel (49)
Recent examples of the streaming service Netflix, which has managed to cast a wider range of actors than broadcasters like ITV, can be seen on its hit show Bridgerton, set in early 19th century London, and color-blind casting calls keeps.
The period drama, based on Julia Quinn's bestselling novels, follows the romance between Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) and Simon Basset (Regé-Jean Page, a British-Zimbabwean actor) and has been dubbed the next Downton Abbey after a successful Christmas Had start on the streaming site.
On the show, the wife of King George III, Queen Charlotte, is black, played by British actress Golda Rosheuvel, 49, with Ms. Quinn, the writer who supports the "color-conscious" casting, adding that "many historians" believe Queen Charlotte has "some Africans" background.
Bridgerton's reviews have been very positive. It has been described by the Daily Mail weekend magazine as "a boisterous show full of foam, escape and romance".
Sir Lenny seemed to be concerned about the lack of diversity on ITV's hit show Downton Abbey, which is mostly white-cast. In his book, he wrote that the nomination list for the Royal Television Society's annual awards was like a Downton Abbey Christmas special. The Times reported.
The comedian said more needs to be done to increase the number of minority writers, producers and directors behind the camera – and on screen. He added that just "diversity on screen" is "false diversity".
Netflix said it intends to increase diversity in its programming schedule as it is intended to be a "force for good" with the aim of having minority actors play at least 20 percent of the speaking roles and at least one writing, producing or directing. Role in every show.
She hopes the content will meet the needs of a "diverse audience" and attract younger viewers to the subscription service.
The BBC's target for off-camera ethnic minority posts is 20 percent, but it's currently 10 percent. At ITV, 11.5 percent of those in off-screen roles have a minority background, reports The Times.
Anne Mensah, Netflix 'vice-president of the original series who previously worked for the BBC and joined Netflix in 2018, told The Guardian: "We need to get to a place where someone is doing something that doesn't involve an inclusion approach, the Should surprise you.
& # 39; It should be like washing your hands; it should be exactly what you do. & # 39;
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