Cultural sensitivity & Diversity
As your Impact Producer, I can jump in to work with you anywhere from the beginning of pre-production to the end of post-production, specifically with an eye towards social impact. That includes analyzing your content to ensure cultural sensitivity and accuracy, helping think more broadly about diverse and inclusive casting, thinking about unique ways to integrate impact through subtle artistic decisions, and designing broader social impact campaigns for issue-driven projects.
Whether you are trying to make a large social impact or you just want to make sure that you are being intentional about the messages you are putting out into society, I developed a rubric and checklist that I run content through for writers, producers, or development executives to have a better understanding of the scope and potential of their social impact.
Impact strategic planning
Content analysis and curation
Message and brand development
Audience engagement and activation
Social impact oriented marketing and distribution
Policy change advocacy
Press engagement strategy
Sometimes a name means something offensive in a different language. Sometimes a joke you think is funny is actually derogatory. Sometimes our choices in dress or ritual are actually culturally appropriating. We can't know everything, and most of the time it isn't intentional, but it still happens. Using my background in anthropology, I will keep an eye towards holistic cultural sensitivity in content and production to ensure no one is unintentionally hurt, offended, or alienated.
diversity and inclusion
Diversity and inclusion are essential values behind the camera, but they are equally as important in front of the camera. There are the obvious, like a trans person should be cast to play a trans role, or a person living with a disability should be cast to play the role of someone living with a disability. We are past the point where we should be doing things like casting white people to play native americans. But there are also more subtle casting choices, where people of diverse backgrounds should be cast not because the role calls for them to be of that background, but because the role could be played by anyone, and we should no longer be using white, cis-gender, fully able bodied people as the default.
opportunities for impact
Your project might not be focused on getting out some larger message, but that doesn't mean there aren't subtle ways to have a positive social impact. For instance, when drunk driving was an epidemic in the U.S., the Cheers writers room teamed up with the Harvard School of Public Health and Hollywood, Health and Society to come up with the idea of the designated driver, which they casually slipped into a few episodes and made it a national idea. I can help you identify those discreet areas where you can be intentional, for example, in a sex scene, taking an extra second to stop to get a condom.
partnerships with experts
Getting it right is important, and knowing who to consult to make sure the details are right is essential. If you are writing a trans role, we should be pulling in GLAAD to ensure accurate representation. If you're highlighting a rural community in West Africa, we should be consulting West Africans from rural communities. If you're writing about health, we should be getting feedback from Hollywood, Health, and Society. Knowing who to go to and the right questions to ask helps ensure the authenticity and believability of the project.