Monday, August 21, 2023

Could Hollywood’s Racism Carry Into Book Publishing?



The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has recently implemented diversity requirements that guarantee movies will not be made based on merit, but on serving a blind woke agenda. As a result, Hollywood is destroying itself from within. I hope the book world does not copy what’s being done with movies.   

The Academy announced for new diversity and inclusion standards for Best Picture eligibility in 2020, requiring a film must meet two out of four criteria, which zeros in on onscreen representation, themes and narrative, the creative leadership and project team, industry access and opportunities and audience development.   

So, what’s wrong with all of this?  

It is forcing a situation where purity of story and creativity are now second-hand to meeting some sanctioned standard that doesn’t necessarily help the movie turn into something really good. We can’t have quotas being forced on studios in order for their films to be considered for awards.   

I want to see a movie with whatever is needed to best tell the story. Don’t tell me you have to add in a black character or that a Jewish character has to be portrayed by a Jew. Or that a gay character can only be played by such a person.  

I fear the book world will – or is in the act of -- going there. Will books, to be green-lighted, now have to be written by a quota of minorities? Will awards not be given to the best writers - but rather, the best minorities? Sometimes they may be the same --sometimes not. Will books have to change their storylines to get a quota of Hispanic, LGBTQ+, and Native Americans in there? 

The thing about publishing, as an industry, is it is disproportionally female, gay, and white, but as a straight male I am not complaining. I hope that the best talent is in place and if not, let’s hire better, but let’s not force fake standards here.  

Let’s be clear. There is a problem in Hollywood. They now have racist/sexist policies to counter perhaps other racist/sexist behaviors. It’s not tolerable either way. And if the book world keeps going along with its quotas, censorship, and re-writes of classics, it too is heading for the toilet.  

We all just want a fair shot at things. Don’t hire me for being one thing - or dismiss me for being another. Just bring in the best people to craft the best stories - and let them live in film and on the book page. Our creativity and fantasies can’t breathe when censored and mucked up by quota systems. 

Though fans want Hollywood’s striking writers compensated and to return, no one needs them back if they have to pen racist/sexist/genderist garbage. Let’s just have a fair and level playing field when it comes to content creation.

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About Brian Feinblum

Brian Feinblum should be followed on LinkedIn. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2023. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog, and El Chapo, a pug rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This award-winning blog has generated over 3.4 million pageviews. With 4,600+ posts over the past dozen years, it was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby  and recognized by Feedspot in 2021 and 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by as a "best resource.” For the past three decades, including 21 years as the head of marketing for the nation’s largest book publicity firm, and two jobs at two independent presses, Brian has worked with many first-time, self-published, authors of all genres, right along with best-selling authors and celebrities such as: Dr. Ruth, Mark Victor Hansen, Joseph Finder, Katherine Spurway, Neil Rackham, Harvey Mackay, Ken Blanchard, Stephen Covey, Warren Adler, Cindy Adams, Todd Duncan, Susan RoAne, John C. Maxwell, Jeff Foxworthy, Seth Godin, and Henry Winkler. He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America, and has spoken at ASJA, Independent Book Publishers Association Sarah Lawrence College, Nonfiction Writers Association, Cape Cod Writers Association, Willamette (Portland) Writers Association, APEX, and Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association. His letters-to-the-editor have been published in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Post, NY Daily News, Newsday, The Journal News (Westchester) and The Washington Post. He has been featured in The Sun Sentinel and Miami Herald. For more information, please consult:  



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