×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Time’s Up Entertainment Announces New Industry Mentoring Initiative

Time’s Up Entertainment, an affiliate of the Time’s Up coalition of women across industries working to improve workplace safety, has announced the “Who’s in the Room” industry mentoring initiative. The program’s goal is to increase the presence of people of color from diverse backgrounds in the entertainment industry’s executive ranks.

Funded by a $500,000 grant from CBS, “Who’s in the Room” will target the two most problematic points in the workforce pipeline for people of color: starting entry-level positions and jumping from assistant to junior executive positions. The initiative will begin with a pilot class of 10 students, who will be mentored by more experienced peers. The class will expand to 50 students within the next two years.

“The fact is that young people are dropping out of the industry because they are not being provided the support to succeed — this program provides them that targeted support,” said Nithya Raman, executive director of Time’s Up Entertainment. “We thank CBS for funding this important program and feel extraordinarily grateful to have such a committed and talented group of industry leaders lending their time and talent to shape this program.”

The initiative was spearheaded by a group of industry veterans, including Chernin president of film and television Jenno Topping, TV executive Tara Duncan, Warner Bros. Pictures senior vice president of film production Niija Kuykendall, and Netflix vice president of original films Tendo Nagenda.

Promising to stand out from the slew of other mentoring programs, “Who’s in the Room” emphasizes engagement from mentors and accountability measures, which include weekly check-ins. With the use of peer networks and incentivized engagement, the initiative will provide participants a specially designed curriculum to succeed, including biz-focused training and personal growth workshops.

“There is nothing short of an urgent need at the moment to have the people who buy, create, and promote entertainment content be more representative of the people we serve,” Topping said. “WITR hopes to exponentially change and expand the landscape within five years by aggressively growing the next crop of producer and executive talent. Recent financial data, such as the recent report from Creative Artists Agency and shift7, confirms it’s in all of our best interests.”

To combat the low or minimum-wage pay given to entry-level positions, the initiative plans to use a financial-aid model to help candidates afford expenses in the form of a flexible fund of up to $10,000 each, to be used for professional development opportunities, basic subsidies, or emergency relief.

The Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund, which is run by the National Women’s Law Center Fund, will also receive a $1.5 million contribution to continue to help survivors of workplace sexual harassment with legal assistance.

Popular on Variety

More Biz

  • Harvey Weinstein

    Weinstein Can Get a Fair Trial in Manhattan, Says D.A.

    The Manhattan District Attorney’s office argued on Friday that Harvey Weinstein can get a fair trial in Manhattan, and blamed the producer’s defense team for much of the pre-trial publicity in the case. Weinstein’s attorneys have asked an appellate court to transfer the case — which is set to begin on Sept. 9 — to [...]

  • Leonardo DiCaprio Madonna

    Leonardo DiCaprio, Madonna Call for Action on Amazon Wildfires

    As wildfires rage at an alarming rate in Brazil’s Amazon rain forest, celebrities are using their platforms to bring awareness to the deforestation’s impact and to call for action. In the past week, stars like Leonardo DiCaprio, Madonna, Cara Delevingne and Ariana Grande have taken to Instagram to express their frustration with the lack of [...]

  • 'The Durrells' TV Show

    Greece Sweetens Production Incentives as Struggling Country's Economy Rebounds

    It’s taken the better part of a decade for Greece to show signs of recovery from the crippling crisis that almost pushed it out of the Eurozone. Now, with the economy slowly on the mend, the government is doubling down on efforts to jump-start the local film industry, giving a dramatic overhaul to the incentive [...]

  • Warner Music Group Partners With Audiomack

    Warner Music Group Partners With Audiomack

    Warner Music Group announced it has entered a partnership with the music streaming and discovery service Audiomack, marking the platform’s first licensing deal with a major label. According to the announcement, the two companies will work together on content concepts and explore ways to break emerging artists, connecting music fans with rising talent before they [...]

  • Scooter Braun Congratulates Taylor Swift on

    Scooter Braun Congratulates Taylor Swift on ‘Brilliant’ Album and Campaign

    Two days after Taylor Swift fired off the latest salvo in her battle with Scooter Braun, the manager congratulated the singer on the campaign around her “brilliant” new album, “Lover,” which arrived last night. The message came after Swift said she will be re-recording songs from her first six albums, which are now owned by [...]

  • David Koch Obit

    David Koch, Libertarian Activist and Billionaire Philanthropist, Dies at 79

    David Koch, brother of Charles Koch and one of the owners of Koch Industries, the second-largest private company in the U.S., has died at 79. According to the New York Times, Charles Koch announced the news of his brother’s death in a statement. Though he did not attribute to David’s death to a particular cause, [...]

  • Beverly Hills Realtor Accused of Stealing

    Beverly Hills Realtor Accused of Stealing From Usher, Adam Lambert

    A Beverly Hills real estate agent has been arrested on charges of stealing from the homes of celebrities, including Usher, Adam Lambert and “Real Housewives” star Dorit Kemsley. Jason Emil Yaselli, 32, is accused of encouraging an accomplice, Benjamin Ackerman, to enter homes during open houses in order to steal from them. Ackerman allegedly sold [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content