People/Biz

Brown Girls Doc Mafia launches searchable directory for doc filmmakers of color

Brown Girls Doc Mafia (BGDM), a grassroots organization founded to address diversity issues in the film industry, has launched a searchable member directory in an effort to boost representation behind ...
August 13, 2020

Brown Girls Doc Mafia (BGDM), a grassroots organization founded to address diversity issues in the film industry, has launched a searchable member directory in an effort to boost representation behind the camera.

The digital searchable directory will feature more than 200 of BGDM’s members which encompasses women, non-binary filmmakers and executives of color working throughout the documentary space.

In launching the directory, BGDM is also calling on the documentary industry to commit to hiring more women and non-binary people of color across all roles, while hoping to dismantle “racism and sexism throughout the industry and increase hiring of BGDM members across all roles.” The free-to-use platform is open to leading production companies, networks, studios, showrunners and other key industry leaders.

“Advocacy, community building, and creative and professional development is how Brown Girls Doc Mafia disrupts inequalities, shifts power in the field, and invests in Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) creatives,” said BGDM founder and director Iyabo Boyd in a statement. “We believe women and non-binary people should be encouraged to pursue the careers they truly desire, receive support for their pursuits, and rise into positions of power in the film industry.”

The launch of the online directory coincides with BGDM’s #GoFundBGDMcrowdfunding campaign which will be invested in the growth of the organization and be used to provide sustainability grants for members. Now in its second week, the fundraising campaign has raised more than US$120,000, with a total goal of $400,000.

“We’ve seen clearly over the recent months that our field is not immune to the dual pandemics of racism and COVID-19,” added Boyd. “BGDM and other BIPOC led organizations are refusing to ignore how systemic racism not only impacts the world around us but permeates the documentary film industry as well.

“The timing of our directory unveiling on the heels of our crowdfund launch is all part of a coordinated effort to drive our organization and our community toward deeper organizational sustainability and catalyze our ability to support members through grantmaking. The story is ours to tell.”

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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