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30 January 2019

Separate and Unequal

by Syd Briscoe

Short Films: “Diversish” - 3 mins 50s

Diversity is on the agenda for any agency who wants to be on the right side of history, but how much of that is about being seen to perform the requisite 'wokeness'? That's the question asked by this hard-hitting spoof, which highlights the fact disability is rarely considered a 'sexy' or high priority issue to champion.

The performances are spot on, as various fictional business figures spout well-rehearsed buzzwords when asked about their company's approach to diversity. From trying to pronounce 'BAME' correctly to repeating 'the future is female' in place of actual policy, it's satire which skates extremely close to the truth.

One standout moment is when a CEO shoves the only disabled member of his workforce in front of the camera, only for the bloke to be cut off as he points out he's also featured on their website. It's a subtle yet powerful take-down of tokenism, of the empty gestures (murals about Black Power, sponsoring a Pride float, et cetera.) which don't actually do anything for the people they're claiming to support.

Director James Rouse has hit the nail square on the head with the film's tone, as a reporter becomes increasingly bewildered as even direct questions about disability don't get him any answers. Industry figures who find this uncomfortable viewing have an easy way to assuage their conscience - and if they don't know what it is after watching this, they never will.

Creative Agency: Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO Ⓟ Ⓦ
ECD: Alex Grieve
Creative Director: Richard McGrann / Andy Clough
Creative: Polina Zabrodskaya / Michael Jones
Account Team: Katy Talikowska / Sonia Karia / Sophie Clarke / Abbi Brown
Business Team: Maxine Thompson
Strategy: Margaux Revol
Agency Producer: Darapen Vongsa-Nga
Film Production: Outsider Ⓟ Ⓦ
Director: James Rouse Ⓟ Ⓦ
Producer: Benji Howell
Editor: Bill Smedley Ⓦ @ Work Ⓟ Ⓦ
Post Production: Electric Theatre Collective Ⓟ Ⓦ
Colourist: Luke Morrison @ Electric Theatre Collective Ⓟ Ⓦ
Sound Designer: Anthony Moore / James Utting / Josh Campbell @ Factory Ⓟ Ⓦ

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