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Variety to Host Conference on Diversity and Inclusion in Hollywood

Variety will host the first-ever conference on diversity and inclusion in Hollywood, the media company announced today.

The conference, which is called “Inclusion,” aims to foster dialogue around various aspects of diversity including ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and aging, by engaging senior executives and talent from the creative community.

Academy Award nominee and musician Pharrell Williams and Universal Studios chairman Donna Langley will have keynote conversations with Variety editors at the conference.  “Inclusion” will also consist of a series of panels tackling issues ranging from advancing Latino entertainment to LGBTQ rights. PwC’s U.S. Board Chairman Brian Cullinan will moderate a fireside chat with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

AARP and PwC are sponsors for the event.

“There is no issue in Hollywood today more important and relevant than diversity and inclusion. It is Variety’s privilege and responsibility to lead an industry-wide dialogue and bring the decision makers of our community together to promote solutions to counter the lack of minority talent in film and television. This is an issue that transcends the entertainment business, and we are excited to play a role in the broader conversation,” said Michelle Sobrino-Stearns, group publisher of Variety.

“Age discrimination is an incredibly important issue, not just to AARP’s 38 million members nationwide, but across all facets of society,” Jo Ann Jenkins, AARP CEO added. “We hope the dialogue at the Variety conference will lead not only to greater awareness of the issue but to more and better opportunities for talented actors, producers, directors, and others in the creative community — whatever their age.”

A 2016 UCLA study found minorities remain underrepresented in Hollywood on every front (nearly 3 to 1 among film leads and directors). The study also found U.S. audiences are seeking diverse film and television content.

The conference will be on November 1, 2016 at The Montage hotel in Beverly Hills.

For more information on “Inclusion,” go to events.variety.com.

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