A report on the state of diversity in Hollywood is in, and it's predictably depressing.
The overview from UCLA's Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies found that in 2011, minority actors took only 10.5% of the lead roles in the top 172 films released that year. It is a significant underrepresentation of actual minorities, who accounted for about 36% of the U.S. population in 2010. Most of the films that did include minority leads were ethnic-targeted movies, including a Tyler Perry title and Jumping the Broom.
Out of that same pool of 172 films, over half included casts made up of 10% minorities or less. Only 2.3% of the films featured casts who were nearly representative of the actual U.S. minority population.
Women, too, were given short shrift. They took barely a quarter of lead roles — typically in female-focused films like Bridesmaids and The Help — and accounted for only 4% of directors among the top movies.
In television, things are even bleaker. Minorities took only 5% of lead comedy and drama roles on broadcast channels; they did a little better on cable, where they accounted for 14.7% of shows like VH1's Single Ladies and Nickelodeon's Supah Ninjas. They were also more likely to be cast in reality shows.
Thanks to shows like Scandal, 30 Rock, 2 Broke Girls, women were proportionately represented on broadcast networks — but not on cable.