WGAW Forms Middle Eastern Writers Committee; Inaugural Event Set With Ramy Youssef

EXCLUSIVE: Writers Guild of America West (WGAW) is trying to enhance visibility and champion Middle Easter voices with the newly shaped Middle Eastern Writers Committee (MEWC).

The new committee will assist bolster Middle Eastern writers throughout the movie and tv business, whereas persevering with to rejoice and promote correct portrayals of Middle Eastern characters throughout the media landcape. To kick issues off, MEWC has set their first occasion highlighting Middle Eastern illustration between WGA members and a panel of visitors that includes Ramy co-creator and star Ramy Youssef. The digital occasion will happen Febraury 24 at 7PM PT.

The formation of the committee stems from the discharge of the guild’s  2020 Inclusion Report, which confirmed that, whereas most main non-white teams have been underrepresented in TV and movie relative to their share of the U.S. inhabitants, Middle Eastern writers had “virtually no illustration in any respect.” A mere 0.3% of working display screen and TV writers recognized as Middle Eastern.

“That quantity actually lit a fireplace underneath us to kind the committee,” mentioned MEWC co-chairs Paiman Kalayeh and Cameron Fay, who will co-host the inaugural occasion. “We’ve each been working as skilled writers for over a decade now, and we have grown more and more annoyed by two foremost issues. One, the destructive depiction of Middle Eastern characters in movie and TV. And two, the historic lack of employment alternatives for Middle Eastern writers.”

“Anytime you may convey collectively teams and create neighborhood, you might be planting seeds for tasks that might occur later this yr, subsequent yr, or possibly even in 5 or ten years,” mentioned Ramy Youssef. “It takes plenty of seed planting for a show to grow to be what it must be. It takes time, however what we’re constructing now will grow to be the business’s infrastructure within the subsequent 5 to 10 years. It’s all neighborhood.”

WGA Writers and co-founding MEWC members embody Evan Mirzai, Shea Mirzai, Mano Agapion, Julian Kiani, Annie Wood, Abdi Nazemian, Brittany Sarkisian and 72 others. The committee is working to deal with visibility by constructing neighborhood amongst writers who determine as Middle Eastern, and offering a platform to interact with a broader community {of professional} writers. Launching the rent Middle Eastern hashtag #hireME is one step in constructing that neighborhood between the .3% of Middle Eastern writers and the remaining 99.7% of the business.

For extra particulars concerning the February 24 occasion click here.

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