CBS Will Require Reality Shows to Have 50% Non-White Casts
CBS, the broadcaster of reality shows “Survivor,” “The Amazing Race” and “Big Brother,” will require 50% of casts of unscripted programs to be non-White next season, marking the latest push by Hollywood to diversify.
The network, part of ViacomCBS Inc., also vowed Monday to allocate at least 25% of its unscripted development budgets to projects created by producers who are Black, indigenous or people of color.
Reality shows like “Survivor” and “Big Brother” have drawn criticism over the years for seeming tocondone racism and not representing minorities well enough in their casts. The changes are part of abroader reckoning over the way media companies treat minorities on screen and off.
“The reality TV genre is an area that’s especially underrepresented, and needs to be more inclusive across development, casting, production and all phases of storytelling,” George Cheeks, CBS Entertainment Group’s president and chief executive officer, said in a statement announcing the changes.
The requirements and targets only apply to shows branded under CBS. Other networks owned by the parent company,ViacomCBS, aren’t included in the guidelines.
CBS has made previous pledges about its scripted shows, aiming to devote 25% of future budgets to diverse creators. It also plans to have writers rooms be at least 40% non-White by next season and 50% the following year.
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