TOP 10 - MEDIA PROGRESS MOMENTS 2021
LEIGH-ANNE PINNOCK’S RACE, POP AND POWER DOCUMENTARY
Leigh-Ann Pinnock: Race, Pop and Power was a powerful BBC documentary which followed the pop singer as she confronted her experience as the only Black member of Little Mix, and as a Black woman in the music industry. The star won plaudits for the programme and said he made it to “stand up for my black and brown community”.
THANDIWE NEWTON RECLAIMING HER NAME
The actor formerly known as Thandie Newton has said she was reclaiming the original Zulu-derived spelling of her name for use in her professional career, declaring: “I’m taking back what’s mine.”
For more than 30 years, the actor, born Melanie Thandiwe Newton Parker, has been known by an anglicised version of her name since the “w” was dropped “carelessly” from her first acting credit.
SHONDA RHIMES' BRIDGERTON
The hit Netflix drama, the most-watched series ever on the streaming service, changed our understanding of the past. The series won international praise for re-imagining 18th century England as a time when relationships between races are not forbidden, and a place where people of color are front and center.
THE ENGLAND TEAM TAKE A KNEE AGAINST RACISM
Boos were drowned out by applause as England took the knee before their opening Euro 2020 fixture against Croatia. Commenting on the anti-racist gesture, the Football Assocation said: “As the team has reiterated many times, they will collectively take the knee ahead of their fixtures during the tournament. They are doing this as a mechanism of peacefully protesting against discrimination, injustice and inequality.”
LOOSE WOMEN'S FIRST ALL-BLACK PANEL
Loose Women was celebrated by audiences as a all-Black panel took the reins for a historic episode. ITV newsreader Charlene White led the episode and was joined by Kelle Bryan, Judi Love and Brenda Edwards. The landmark show received an incredible response and has been nominated for multiple awards.
HIMESH PATEL IN YESTERDAY
The musical romantic comedy film directed by Danny Boyle sees Himesh Patel starring as struggling musician Jack Malik, who suddenly finds himself the only person who has ever heard of the Beatles and becomes famous after taking credit for their songs. The film didn’t intend to make a statement about race but Patel said he understands the importance his role has for the South Asian community.
CHANNEL 5’S ANNE BOLEYN
The story of Anne Boleyn was retold in this Channel 5 drama when the tragic wife of King Henry VIII was played by Black actress Jodie Turner-Smith. The star made history as the first woman of colour to play the ill-fated second wife of the king. She said: “I put my heart and spirit into this daring retelling of the fall of this iconic woman.”
NIDA MANZOOR'S WE ARE LADYPARTS
The Channel 4 sitcom created, written and directed by Nida Manzoor follows an British punk rock band, which consists entirely of Muslim women. The show which premiered in May 2021 to critical acclaim takes inspiration from London’s rich and diverse collection of cultures.
ALEX BERESFORD STANDS UP FOR MEGHAN MARKLE
Good Morning Britain’s Alex Beresford won widespread support after confronting his colleague Piers Morgan about his “trashing” of Meghan Markle. The TV weatherman defended Meghan and empathised with her experience of racism, during a heartfelt outburst on Good Morning Britain earlier this year.
STEVE MCQUEEN'S SMALL AXE
The British film series, created and directed by Steve McQueen, tells distinct stories about the lives of West Indian immigrants to London from the 1960s to the 1980s. The BBC series secured major acclaim for telling vivid stories of hard-won victories in the face of racism.