Ava DuVernay Helps Start a Diversity Initiative for Hollywood

Ava DuVernay Helps Start a Diversity Initiative for Hollywood


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The director Ava DuVernay, who helped start the Evolve Entertainment Fund.

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Chris Delmas/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

With an eye toward helping young women and people of color break into the entertainment business, the city of Los Angeles is hoping to lend a hand.

Eric Garcetti, the mayor of Los Angeles, and Ava DuVernay, a filmmaker who has rocketed up the ranks in Hollywood, are teaming up with the producer Dan Lin (“The Lego Movie”) to start a public-private partnership that would fund 150 internships for women, people of color and those from low-income households, they announced on Monday. The goal is to support 500 interns a year by 2020 — which, incidentally, might be when Mr. Garcetti follows through on his consideration to run for president.

The program is called the Evolve Entertainment Fund, and it is partnering with top Hollywood powerhouses like DreamWorks and the Creative Artists Agency to place Hollywood aspirants on a track for a film career.

Hollywood has been the subject of criticism for decades about inequality in its ranks, both in front and behind the camera. In 2017, a Milken Institute study showed people of color in Hollywood were underrepresented compared to the racial demographics of Los Angeles as a whole, and underpaid compared to their white counterparts. It reported similar findings for women.

“When ‘Oscars So White’ and ‘Time’s Up’ put a spotlight on inequality in Hollywood, they captured the frustrations of people shut out of opportunity in what the world knows as L.A.’s signature industry,” Mr. Garcetti said in a news release.

Added Ms. DuVernay in the statement: “Real change happens when we take tangible action — and that means giving young women and people of color opportunities in the industry early on.”



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