Walt Disney Television chairman of entertainment Dana Walden says that ABC passed on pilot episodes of potential network shows because they didn’t satisfy the network’s racial “inclusion” standards.
“I will tell you for the first time we received some incredibly well-written scripts that did not satisfy our standards in terms of inclusion, and we passed on them,” Walden said during a panel discussion put on by Chapman University and Glamour, according to a report by Hollywood Reporter.
Walden said the network received a script that centered around a white family with the understanding that the diversity would come with the neighbors. “Pass,” Walden said. “That’s not going to get on the air anymore because that’s not what our audience wants. That’s not a reflection of our audience, and I feel good about the direction we’re moving.”
Last fall, ABC launched a “set of inclusion standards” in order to move toward “more diverse representation both onscreen and behind the scenes on network shows.” The guidelines called for 50 percent or more of regular and recurring characters to come from “underrepresented groups,” as well as the same percentage of actors who play those parts.
Walden said the network is set to announce a new “BIPOC” programming initiative at Hulu. The term “BIPOC” refers to “black, Indigenous and people of color.”
“It is programming that is by BIPOC storytellers, for BIPOC audiences, curated by executives of color, high-level leaders inside of our organization,” she said.
ABC and other networks have gone woke” and anti police in recent years.
In what has become a common theme of anti-police plots on cable and network dramas and sitcoms, ABC’s The Rookie recently featured a mother who tells her police officer daughter that she is “not proud” of her because she is a “paid bully for the city.”
Last month, Disney+ filtered Dumbo, Peter Pan, Swiss Family Robinson, and The Aristocats out of the “Kids Profile” mode, as the classic films are now deemed racist.
Moreover, Walt Disney CEO Bob Chapek has recently claimed the company is not left or right leaning, and that everyone agrees Disney has the power “to unite us all.” Meanwhile, two thirds of Americans say the multimedia company has taken political correctness too far.