– by Joseph Jammer Medina

Diversity is a sensitive issue on any level. Many people roll their eyes when they hear others bring it up, and I’m sure that some readers rolled their eyes at the mere sight of the headline. But the problem is all too real, and while many top dogs in Hollywood are eager enough to voice their concerns, not a whole lot of them are acting on it.

In a recent interview with THR, Ryan Murphy, who is perhaps best known for writing and executive producing AMERICAN HORROR STORY, spoke on the very issue of diversity in Hollywood.

“I personally can do better. [Publicist] Nanci [Ryder] said, ‘People in power, you have a position and responsibility to change the industry,’ and I thought, ‘She’s right,'”

Murphy has now acted on that power to create the foundation known as Half, which aims to ensure that half the directors on his shows wouldn’t be just straight, white males. 

As of this writing, only 16 percent of TV is female-directed, and only 18 percent is minority-directed. By the end of this year, Half aims to make sure that 50 percent of the directors on Murphy’s shows (SCREAM QUEENS, AMERICAN HORROR STORY, AMERICAN CRIME STORY) are either woman or minority-directed. For those wonder what constitutes as a minority, he defines it as either a person of color of a member of the LGBTQ community. 

In addition to this big step, Murphy is looking to send Half to colleges in hopes of setting up mentorships at his production company. 

“The industry has always been about, you come to us. There’s not a lot of effort and inclusion, and I’m saying, ‘No, we’re going to go to you.’”

Not a bad first effort. Change usually starts at the top, and when the men and women up top start making choices that encourage chain, the rest of the industry will follow suit.

What do you think of Murphy’s actions? Let us know in the comments down below!


Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.