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CBC/Radio Canada Must Boost Support for Diverse, Indie TV Producers

ES Staff  |  Indie TV Ticker

The CRTC, Canada's TV and telecom watchdog, the CRTC, will mandate CBC's English-language services to spend 30% of their overall programming budget on local independent series developed by "indigenous producers, OLMC (bilingual) producers, racialized producers, producers with impairments, and LGBTQ2 producers."

The CBC's minimum spending level will rise to 35% in its last license year.

Even though the CBC wasn't compelled to sponsor indigenous and diversity programs, it did in recent years. The CRTC stated minimum spending standards for content diversity will support independent film and TV makers from underrepresented places.

CBC officials claimed it was too early to set aside particular cash for certain communities because "properly sharing the network's programming pie" would be difficult. The CRTC claimed the conclusion could be "programming by math."

TV watchdog wants CBC to be more accountable for measuring content diversity. This comes after the CBC had difficulties with how individuals were portrayed on two of its original shows made by independent producers: Trickster and Kim's Convenience.

Canadian film filmmaker Michelle Latimer apologized for falsely claiming Algonquin ancestry. She did this after directing the first season of Trickster, a CBC TV drama about an Indigenous teen with a problematic home.

Latimer's native ancestry sparked criticism from the Canadian film industry, where First Nations filmmakers are getting more government aid. In social media posts, two stars of the CBC comedy Kim's Convenience, including Simu Liu of Marvel Studios' Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, spoke about season five's diversity, unequal compensation, and racist plots.

The CRTC will demand additional reporting on the CBC's in-house programming personnel to gauge diversity.

Before the license renewal hearings in June 2021, the CBC specified at least 30% of all important creative jobs on its new original scripted and unscripted programming must be filled by Indigenous, black, people of color, or people with disabilities.

Elsewhere, Telefilm Canada, the country's top film financier, has taken more steps on its own to fix a two-tiered industry in which privileged producers get automatic and large funding while Canadian filmmakers from BIPOC and other under-served communities have been kept out for a long time.