On-screen portrayal of particular groups can influence perception of those groups, especially among audiences who have little contact with them in everyday life.
Stereotyped or superficial characters may reinforce negative images and misunderstandings and even influence behaviour towards certain groups, particularly if a character is the sole representative. Such under-represented in film can also give a misleading picture of our society, and could exclude potential audiences.
This presents the industry with both responsibilities and opportunities. By portraying characters with well-developed personalities, with differing levels of ability, and from a range of backgrounds, filmmakers can bring variety and quality of representation into their work.
Casting is key to representing diversity and to creating films that will interest and appeal to wide audiences. This section offers help with finding actors and creating authentic portrayals.
- Sources of acting talent - gives examples of places to find a diverse range of actors.
- Casting and working with disabled actors - contains links to resources concerned with this particulary under-represented group.
- See also Examples in films.