What Does a Diverse Hollywood Look Like?

A class in film directing at the Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
Credit: Hilary Swift for The New York Times

Amanda Reyes was auditioning for her umpteenth acting role in New York City recently when the casting director asked her to “be more ghetto.” It was nothing new. She had worked for several years in Los Angeles, and the acting parts for Latinas were for teenage moms, gang bangers and hustlers — never the protagonist — and more often than not, an offensive stereotype.

“I go through this almost every audition,” Ms. Reyes, 27, said. “It beats you down.” So a few years ago, before the #OscarsSoWhite campaign, she decided to take action and study screenwriting close to home, at the University of North Texas in Denton. “I had to see if I could write genuine Latina roles,” she said.

She developed a short film, which made it into some small festivals. Then she applied to the new Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema in Brooklyn, which opened its doors a year and a half ago. Excerpt courtesy of The New York Times.

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  • published this page in Discussions 2017-03-09 11:37:17 -0500
  • responded with submitted 2017-03-09 11:36:28 -0500