This is the most shocking report on TV production diversity ever

A shocking new study on the UK TV industry has revealed how only 1.5% of all episodes are directed by ethnic minorities and the figures get even worse.

BAME Directors (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) only account for 3.5% of the entire workforce while for TV shows they are significantly under-represented across production in every genre. Over 98% of directors for natural history programmes were white while top drama ‘Coronation Street’ produced by ITV had close to 0 BAME directors (0.03% episode participation).

To make matters more acute, the study by Directors UK revealed that sketch shows hired no BAME directors and some of the UK’s most watched shows had no directing talent of any ethnicity other than white.

TV Shows with 0% Director diversity

  • The Graham Norton Show
  • The Jeremy Kyle Show
  • Live With Gabby
  • Loose Women
  • This Morning
  • Deal or no Deal
  • University Challenge
  • The Chase
  • The Cube
  • I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here
  • Famous and Fearless
  • Chris And Wes: Let’s Do This

(This is just a sample of the shows that hire no BAME directors, but there are many more highlighted in the study.)

The lack of diversity isn’t just apparent in popular reality and TV shows. Period Dramas also hired 100% white directors where BAME talent had no representation at all. World renowned drama ‘Downton Abbey’, ‘The Hour’ and ‘Mr Selfridge’ were among the high budget productions that failed to hire a single BAME director for any episodes.

97.54% of all factual productions were made by white directors and just 1.77% of all children’s programming had a BAME director.

According to the study BAME workers account for 11% of the creative workforce, while BAME groups make up 14% of the total UK population.

The figures highlight significant under-representation of minorities in every part of the industry, and also reveal a 20% drop in employment from pre-2011 programmes to 2013 (1.67% down to 1.29%). This also comes after the DCMS revealed how there had been a 5% drop in employment for women across the film industry. With these declines is it now time for an industry-wide shakeup?

film industry network members