Last Saturday, Shonda Rhimes and “Scandal” executive producer Betsy Beers received a Diversity Award from the Directors Guild of America. But when Rhimes has something on her mind, she isn’t one to bite her tongue about it.
“When I heard I was getting a Diversity Award, I was really, truly, profoundly honored … but I was also a little pissed off,” Rhimes said, according to EW. “So was Betsy. So over many, many, many bottles of wine we discussed this.”
“We’re a little pissed off because there still needs to be an award. Like, there’s such a lack of people hiring women and minorities that when someone does it on a regular basis, they are given an award.”
Rhimes also went on to speak about what many refer to the “white boys” club in Hollywood and how it impacts minorities and women.
“It’s not because of a lack of talent. It’s because of a lack of access. People hire who they know. If it’s been a white boys club for 70 years, that’s a lot of white boys hiring one another. And I don’t believe that that happens out of any specific racism or sexism or prejudice. People hire their friends. They hire who they know. It’s comfortable. You want to be successful, you don’t want to take any chances, you don’t want to rock the boat by hiring people of color because, well, look at us,” she said. “Both Betsy and I like the world that we work in to look like the world that we live in. Different voices make for different visions. Different visions make for something original. Original is what the public is starving for.”
She ended her speech thanking the Directors Guild of America and their effort to draw attention to the problem, which she thinks is “kind of badass”.
Rhimes’ hit show “Scandal” returns to the airwaves on Thursday, February 27 at 10 p.m. EST on ABC.