Earlier this week, the EE British Academy Film Awards announced important dates for the 2018 season. Along with the dates, the announcement – here – also reveals BAFTA’s new entry guides.
Crumbling under the weight of pressure from campaigners and bullying hashtags like #Baftassowhite, the Academy now introduces new ‘more diverse’ entry requirements for British films ONLY. We assume, that any international film doesn’t have to comply with any of the laid out, half-baked ‘social engineering’ rules.
‘In order to help the film industry to become more ‘inclusive’ and offer opportunities to talented people from all walks of life,’ BAFTA have announced that starting from the 2018/19 season, films being entered for the British film categories will need to show that they have made efforts to make their films more representative and/or inclusive by meeting at least two of the four diversity standards set out by the BFI.
The ‘Diversity Standards’ leaflet will likely be familiar to filmmakers as it is being actively distributed on various Film Festivals. Until now, filmmakers had no chance of getting BFI and Lottery funds unless compliant with at least two ‘Diversity Standards’, -sic- although ‘all applicants are actively encouraged to pursue at least three.’
Starting form 2018/19 season, British films will need to meet the same criteria in order to even be considered for BATFA. Considering that it takes on average up to 7 years to write, fund, produce and release a feature film, I would imagine not all film makers will be happy to learn about new enforced rules.
In preparation for this, the announcement continues, for the upcoming 2017/18 season it will be a condition of entry that films entering these categories should be submitted to the BFI for assessment against the diversity standards.
There will be no requirement to meet the standards in 2017/18, but the Academy want to ensure that as many producers and distributors as possible are engaging with the standards before the rule comes into force.
BAFTA and the BFI, allegedly, aim to support filmmakers in making these changes. Filmmakers are to expect a list of resources, potential partners and other support materials which can help them achieve these standards, so they claim.
We envisage a surge in NGO’s and ‘diversity campaigners’ (anti-white) that will once again overlook the struggling white English working class. The policy, albeit well-meaning, is likely to increase ‘tokenism,’ meaning that certain professionals will be rejected in favour of perhaps less experienced ones. Or the extremes of so-called ‘positive discrimination‘ – still a Discrimination, – as seen in the BBC Ethnic Minority only employment policies. Enforcing rules ‘from top down’ has never been a good way and we are yet to see what ripples this policy will send through the filmmaking industry.