Madhu Goel Southworth

Southworth has played an integral role in negotiating agreements resulting in some of the networks’ most important initiatives over the past 12 months, including drafting agreements related to AMC’s presence at the San Diego ComicCon. Regarding diversity, she notes, “I think there is a great deal that the entertainment sector can learn from work being done in education and other sectors.”

What questions is the industry not yet asking in its efforts to be more diverse and inclusive that it should be?
I think there is a great deal that the entertainment sector can learn from work being done in education and other sectors. A dear friend of mine who worked as the chief of the Educational Opportunities Section of the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice under President Obama, where she led the Division’s efforts to provide equal educational opportunities for all students, actually doesn’t use the terminology “diversity and inclusion.” She likes to use the phrase “justice and dignity,” which I think adds an important nuance to the problems we are trying to find solutions to.

Which current television show/s best embrace diversity?
I attended our “Walking Dead” panel at ComicCon this past year, and I was very proud to see the representation of our main cast. With actors like Danai Gurira, Avi Nash and Melissa McBride, we are embracing talent from backgrounds that have been historically and tragically underrepresented on the screen.

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