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Directors Guild Reports ‘Slight’ Improvement in TV Hiring Practices of Women, Minorities

The Directors Guild of America has reported “slight” improvements in the hiring of women and minorities during the 2015-16 TV season.

The guild made the disclosure in its sneak peek of data from its upcoming 2015-16 Episodic Television Director Diversity Report. More than 4,100 episodes were analyzed, a 5% increase from last year.

The DGA reported that in the 2015-16 season, women directed 17.1% of episodes – up from 15.8% in the 2014-15 season; and ethnic minorities directed 18.5% of episodes – up from 17.7% in the 2014-15 season. The results were similar to a study last year for first-time TV directors.

“There was a marked difference in hiring patterns between the major networks – which were the clear leaders in diverse hiring – and the basic cable and pay-TV networks,” the guild said.

The DGA will release the full annual report during the summer with analysis of all episodic director hiring across network, basic cable, pay-TV and SVOD series for the entire season.

“It’s important for us to share hiring data during this critical period,” DGA President Paris Barclay said. “As the networks convene in New York to present their fall lineups and court billions in advertising dollars, they’re also deciding on who they’ll hire to direct – to bring these stories to life for an increasingly diverse audience.”

“There’s much work to be done by the networks, studios and producers to repair the broken hiring pipeline they’ve shaped, and then neglected over the years,” he added. “We’ll be providing an in-depth analysis of the entire television season later this summer with a very close eye on new entrants to the pipeline, analyzing who is getting hired for those critical breaks as first-time episodic television directors.”

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