Much of Hollywood’s failure to fully address its diversity problem has been attributed to 'white male executives' who are in charge of the industry’s talent agencies and movie studios.
Sanaa Lathan is opening up about the persistent lack of minority representation in Hollywood and film and says much of Hollywood’s failure to fully address its diversity problem has been attributed to 'white male executive's who are in charge of the industry’s talent agencies and movie studios.
In an interview with HuffingtonPost, the 43-year-old actress says the box office success behind films such as 'Think Like A Man' and 'Straight Outta Compton' is evidence that more people outside of black audiences are truly interested in stories portrayed by black characters.
"I think Hollywood has a ways to go. Certainly in the last couple of years with 'Think Like A Man' and even recently with 'Straight Outta Compton' doing well. But I think the language needs to change, the language about ‘Oh, this is an Urban film or this is a niche film.' No, these are Hollywood films. And it's to marginalize us because it's like some kind of a freak thing that we’ve made all this money off this movie. That’s a problem for me," she said.
According to a study released earlier this year by UCLA's Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies, 94 percent of film studio heads -- who are in charge of green lighting decisions -- were white in 2013, while 92 percent of those in other senior level film studio management roles were white.
Lathan underscored the glaring disparity and said Hollywood should have an accurate representation of all cultures.
"I think we need to come into the 21st century. And films should represent the world that we live in. And right now when you look at Hollywood it’s not an accurate representation of the diversity of the world that we live in,'' she said.
Sanaa's new film, 'The Perfect Guy' which also stars Michael Ealy and Morris Chestnut, debuts in theaters on September 11.