Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti revealed a new initiative that focuses on improving Latinx representation in the entertainment industry. He also wants justice for Jennifer Lopez after the Academy snubbed Lopez over her role in “Hustlers.”
On Monday, Garcetti announced the new initiative called “L.A. Collab,” a campaign that seeks to bring unique on-screen and off-screen opportunities to talent, executives, and artists and fights to “double” the number of Latinx creatives in various entertainment fields, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Garcetti revealed the initiative at an event in Boyle Heights with Eva Longoria. So far, the campaign has raised a quarter million with seed funders.
The project was co-founded by Garcetti along with Mitu founder and Acevedo Foundation president Beatriz Acevedo and AEM president Ivette Rodriguez. The following opportunities have already been negotiated for Latinx creatives: a finance development deal of a feature script with Endeavor Content; a scripted proof-of-concept deal with WarnerMedia’s 150; a documentary development deal with Shine Global; a podcast development/pilot deal with SCPR’s LAist Studios; and a blind digital pilot deal with pocket watch, THR reports.
A number of production studios, organizations, and agencies have already signed on to provide opportunities for Latinx creatives as a part of the campaign, including Blumhouse Productions, Bad Robot, Sundance Institute, Hispanic Heritage Foundation, and more. #EliRoth has also promised to provide Latinx talent on his platform Crypt TV. The initiative will track its progress using, “Database of Latino Working Talent in Hollywood,” created in collaboration with The Latino Donor Collaborative.
But he also took the time to call out the Oscars for its lack of diversity, once again. This morning, the Oscars announced the nominations for this year’s ceremony, which includes zero female directors nominated and only one actor of color nominated in the major acting categories. Garcetti called for justice using the hashtag #JusticeForJLo.
“The Latinx community is a growing force across L.A.’s economy, and our trademark industry should tap into that diverse pool of talent in our own backyard,” Garcetti said in a statement. “On big screens or small, in front of the camera or behind it, our studios, actors, directors, and producers inspire the world with the power of their creativity and imagination — and LA Collab will help bring new voices and dynamic storytellers into the fold by including and empowering the next generation of Latinx leaders.”
This move comes after news from this past year showed that Latinx representation in the entertainment industry exceptionally low. Last August, an Annenberg Inclusion Initiative study found that Latinx characters only made up just 4.5 percent of speaking roles in films from 2007 to 2018.