Police censorship and portrayal on TV gives cop shows the boot, Gone With The Wind gets pulled from HBO but will be returning to streaming under the correct context, Ava Duvernay launches LEAP project, the first Black Bachelor is announced, Ice Cube stands with Paw Patrol, and filming in a pandemic has writers flustered – All on Black Hollywood Live’s Black Hollywood Reporter.

Written by: Samantha Jacobs – June 16th, 2020 5:44pm pst

The Black Hollywood Reporter

Black Hollywood Live’s The Black Hollywood Reporter brings you the top trending news on industry buzz, business and creatives in Black entertainment. This week we talk about police censorship on TV, Gone With The Wind getting pulled from HBO, Ava DuVernay starting the LEAP project, and the first black Bachelorette, plus Rachel Lindsay speaking out about the first black Bachelor. In our special segments we talk about the trending hashtag #ACOB, making tweets go viral to cancel Paw Patrol, and how filming during a pandemic will eliminate intimate scenes from shows completely.

As Black Lives Matter takes the world by storm, the Color of Change organization digs a little deeper into police portrayal on television with the Normalizing Injustice study. This elaborate study by Color of Change reviewed “353 episodes from 26 different scripted series focused on crime from the 2017–2018 season” to showcase how crime TV is miseducating viewers on the justice system. Not only have these shows created a cultural norm on the screen, off the screen the diversity rate is shockingly low. Only 9% of crime writers are black and about 20% of showrunners are people of color. So, where do we go from here after canceling shows like Cops and Live PD? How do we rewrite the standard? Cancel more shows? The study states:

“We need new standards to be socialized and implemented across the industry. Those standards must be backed up by meaningful incentives that reward responsible storytelling, as well as by real consequences that hold executives accountable when they enable (or even encourage) demonstrably harmful stereotypes and inaccuracies to go unchecked. At the same time, the many showrunners and writers who want to do better must be supported in doing so.”

As cops in pop culture are ingrained in our minds, shows have the opportunity to make these changes to reconstruct the norm. We hope to see this continue and be implemented in Hollywood moving forward. For more details on the case study view here

Speaking of Hollywood reconstructing the norm, Ava DuVernay has been a rockstar taking action within the industry to support equality, inclusion and respect. Ava announced on The Ellen Show she has started a new initiative, LEAP, Law Enforcement Accountability Project. LEAP is a fund focused on storytelling around police violence and abuse that will commission projects across multiple forms of media including film, literature, theater, dance, fine art and music. The Hollywood Reporter explained, “LEAP is designed to empower activists to pursue narrative change and is envisioned as a two-year project to launch at least 25 works of art.” Ava continues to emphasise the importance of police accountability and to reshape storytelling to spotlight that. 

A spotlight for Ava is that she has officially joined the Academy’s Board of Governors. On this board of 54 members, 26 are women and 12 are people of color. Ava is making a historical stride despite the irony of her film, Selma, never getting a Best Picture or Acting nomination, leading the buzz around #OscarsSoWhite. The Oscars have been consistently ridiculed for its lack of diversity, and they have finally made an announcement that gives us more hope than anything they’ve said before. They promise to make great efforts to bring equality and inclusion to Hollywood. Could it be because of their new board members? 

It’s a long overdue conversation that needs to happen about the film Gone With The Wind and what it represents. Recently the “greatest movie of all time,” has been pulled from HBO. The Civil War drama is a four-hour, 10 Oscar winning film that highlights the South and the Reconstruction Period after the Civil War, which emphasises white supremacy and racist depictions in pop culture. Although the film brought an Oscar to the first Black actor, Hatte McDaniel, the support and equality within Hollywood was still non-existent. The removal was a “no brainer” according to WarnerMedia’s Direct-to-Consumer chairman, Bob Greenbalt, but the film will not be gone for long. Gone With The Wind will be returning to streaming, under the correct context. Jacqueline Stewart, an African-American film and media studies professor at University of Chicago, will bring an introduction to start the dialogue we need to hear, think and learn from the film. It is important to know the context of the film, because this is still history and we can’t hide it. However, we have the opportunity to change the dialogue to, what can these “classics” teach us? Now we have to see if the audience will accept doing their homework. 

After 18 years and 40 seasons The Bachelor has finally cast their FIRST Black Bachelor! Many fans are excited to see Matt James find love, but many fans also tweeted this should have happened already with Mike Johnson. The explosion of buzz  had Mike reach out to make a PSA that he is OK with never being picked and he’s excited to see Matt do his thing! However, the first Black Bachelorette, Rachel Lindsey had something to say! Having completed her own term on the show, she thinks the company needs to “address the systemic racism in the franchise.” She highlights how on and off the screen there are no people of color and no thought behind asking questions if people have dated outside their race. As much as an audience loves the outrageousness and off-the-cuff viewing on shows like The Bachelor, it is still the Network’s responsibility to showcase the values and mission they stand for. By picking a Black Bachelor, one can hope that this is truly how they feel and will step forward in supporting diversity instead of having a knee-jerk reaction. 

With #ACOB, All Cops Are Bad, trending on twitter, Paw Patrol has been the next victim of endless memes. The Nickelodeon animated children’s show, where the main character Chase, is a police dog, was attacked! At first as a joke, but the momentum was going so strong it got people questioning, Is the show really canceled? So far the answer in no. Ice Cube even jumped in the fun to say protestors are reaching too far, because his grand baby loves the show!  

Lastly, with studios getting ready to open up for filming, writers are under panic mode, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Writers are being told to be smart with their writing while adjusting to new protocols being on set amidst a pandemic. In conclusion, it’s best to leave out any fight and sex scenes from any script to be on the “safe” side. Extras are even getting booted and will be replaced with green screen fun. Will these challenges change your love of your favorite shows? 

We encourage you to watch our companion show to this article, which not only follows this outline, but goes into depth with hosts’ opinions and more inside information. If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to share it with a friend and definitely watch, The Black Hollywood Reporter, here on Black Hollywood Live.

For the best news and talk articles, podcasts and video on Black Hollywood, keep tuning in to Black Hollywood Live.

About The Author:

Samantha Jacobs is is a host for AfterBuzzTV and Black Hollywood Live who is a DePaul University Journalism School Alumni. She has worked for multiple media platforms in radio,TV and film.

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