The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has announced that it will now require films to have some sort of minority representation to qualify for its film awards. This new requirement will be instituted for “two of its most prestigious 2019 awards—‘outstanding British film’ and ‘outstanding debut by a British writer, director or producer’. The plan is for the requirement to be slowly rolled out to more categories over time.
According to The Daily Beast, in order to be considered for a nomination ” a film must fulfil a number of criteria, and give representation to minority voices in regard to disability, gender, race, age and sexual orientation. BAFTA is also encouraging film makers to represent “people from lower socio-economic groups” as well.
These new rules are a far cry from a few years ago when the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite proliferated through social media. Now, many are assuming the new rules for BAFTA will be used as a template for the Oscars in the near future.
Reportedly most films already meet these requirements, but the new rules will now help the number to increase from most to all. In addition, a project doesn’t necessarily have to represent all minorities, but “‘at least one group’ should be prominently and consistently represented in one of four categories, either on-screen, behind the scenes (for example with minorities working as producers or directors) or in terms of likely audience engagement. “