The CW earned the top spot among broadcast networks for LGBTQ + representation for the fourth year in a row as part of GLAAD’s annual media report.
But, CEO and Chairman Mark Pedowitz said the network can still do better in terms of diversity – both in terms of internal hiring and who it works with externally.
About 80% of its new seasonal program, which includes shows such as The flash, and Riverdale, has diversified and / or female showrunners and nearly 60% of its regulars on its scripted series are diversified with 47% of women.
In addition, three of its main development projects, notably Wonder Girl, Naomi and Kill feature various superhero tracks with diverse and female showrunners.
Pedowitz told Deadline that he was overall happy with the on-screen diversity at The CW.
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“There has been a concerted effort for everyone at The CW and our partner studios to create that diversity and inclusion,” he said.
However, he admitted that he was “less happy with us”. This includes internal hires as well as ensuring to work with a wide range of diverse external vendors, such as black-owned photography companies or various catering companies. This is his “next big step”.
“What I want to do is improve ourselves so that we reflect more of today’s society. We need to do a better job internally and externally. I’ll take care of it. We need to create a legacy for the CW so that the next generation we hire reflects the company, ”he said.
But he doesn’t think it should be mandatory but rather done in the “ordinary course of business”.
“We didn’t create any rules or mandates, we just did it for our shows and if you do it in the normal course of business, it’s not really difficult. It’s when you let go of slacking off that you pick up bad habits, ”he added.
Pedowitz is the latest high-level network leader to admit that the road to equal representation has only just begun.
FX boss John Landraf revealed last summer that the Disney-owned broadcaster was looking to hire a diversity and culture SVP, an “ombudsman.” “We have a real job to do [on the executive level]. We need decision makers. I want FX Culture to be a forward-thinking organization. I want him to represent a microcosm of the country, ”he told the Edinburgh International Television Festival.