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Desperately Seeking Diversity in Hollywood
What you need to know: The Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies at UCLA has just released their "2015 Hollywood Diversity Report" and, once again, the results are pretty dire. The study highlights the jarring racial and gender disparities within the industry, with white males still making up the overwhelming majority of the industry's acting, directing, and writing positions. The study does note, however, that impressive strides are being made on TV, where risky, diverse, and successful shows like Jane the Virgin, Empire, and How to Get Away with Murder are giving minority viewers the representation they crave and which has been sorely missing for far too long on the big screen.
Tribeca says: Sick of reading studies and stories like this? Then fork your dollars over and make the necessary time to see movies by non-white, non-male filmmakers in theaters and show Hollywood in a language they can understand that we want diversity both in front of and behind the camera.
The Flat Becomes Part of High School Curriculum
What you need to know: Israeli filmmaker Arnon Goldfinger's 2011 documentary The Flat (a 2012 Tribeca Film Festival award winner for Best Editing in a Documentary Feature) has been added to an official list of films suggested for viewing in German high schools by the German Federal Agency for Civic Education. The film movingly details the complex and startling history of Goldfinger's grandparents, both immigrants from Nazi Germany, as the director attempts to clean out the titular flat they owned in Tel Aviv.
Tribeca says: Just because it isn't on your syllabus doesn't mean you shouldn't check out this involving and investigative must-see documentary.
Discrimination in Ferguson
What you need to know: In light of the murder of Michael Brown, an unarmed, black teenager, and the August acquittal of Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot and killed him, the Department of Justice is expected to release a report this week claiming that police officials in Ferguson, Missouri have ticketed a disproportionate number of black people during "routine" traffic stops in order to balance out the city's budget.
Tribeca says: Watch the above video entitled "How Ferguson showed us the truth about police" for an artful and incisive look at the racial biases and abuses of civil rights that cannot, under any circumstances, be ignored.
Will Butler Branches Out
What you need to know: Arcade Fire member Will Butler joined forces with The Guardian last week to promote his upcoming solo album by releasing a new and newsworthy song every day, using an article from that day's paper as inspiration, including the ISIS-inspired "By the Waters of Babylon" and "Clean Monday," about the Greek debt crisis.
Tribeca says: Staying informed and musically-enriched? It's a clear win-win.
Re-envisioning a Spooky, Sign-Less Tokyo
What you need to know: Artist Nicolas Damiens' new series Tokyo No Ads reimagines the busy, glittering Japanese capital without the inescapable ads, billboards, and electronic logos that are part and parcel of the city's character. In a series of photos and GIFs, Damiens presents a gorgeous, ghostly, black-and-white vision of Tokyo by removing any and all signs, replacing them instead with blank, white, illuminated spaces.
Tribeca says: Might our own Times Square make for an interesting follow-up project?
The Kenny/Warren G Collaboration You Never Knew You Wanted
What you need to know: As part of his late-night show's "Mash-Up Mondays" series, Jimmy Kimmel brought together notorious soprano sax Kenny G and West Coast rapper Warren G, two diametric opposites linked only by surname, to perform an impossibly relaxing rendition of the latter's nineties hip-hop hit "Regulate," with Kenny G subbing in for the late Nate Dogg.
Tribeca says: Sure, you're rolling your eyes at this now, but don't worry, we won't judge you for listening to it eight times this week.