Award-Winning Toronto Filmmaker Observes Oscars Continued lack of Diversity

Toronto filmmaker Ryan Speaks on the Oscars

Last night, as I watched the Academy Awards, I also saw the ensuing debate about the visibly missing representation of diversity within the categories.

Ryan Singh - ACTRA 2

Filmmaker Ryan Singh and his wife Cheryl at ACTRA Toronto Awards ACTRA Alliance of Canadian Television & Radio Artists is a national organization representing professional performers in the recorded, English-language media in Canada

Ryan Singh is a film producer and director with over 20 years experience. He is also an accomplished actor in stage plays, and film/TV projects in Canada. Singh is currently developing several documentaries, short and feature length films.

When stories are picked on the creative merit rather than the politically correct nature of the production then we live in a better world. When I was in South Africa at the Fleur Du Cap Theatre Awards, I saw nominees that represented the South African population that were selected based on the merit of the production not on the political correctness of the environment.

Yet over the last 21 years a concentrated effort has been made to engage ALL voices because the voices of Blacks in South Africa was a segregated, revolutionary one. They were absent from the mainstream arenas in South Africa yet heard outside the boundaries. Prior to the end of Apartheid, Artscape Theatre Centre was a place where blacks cleaned the theatre not performed in it. In the twenty years they are engaged in a culture that values all stories.

We in North America can certainly learn from these experience and value stories on the merits more than that of the political correctness.

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