I love actors. All actors. That’s why I got into casting in the first place. It’s my job to connect them with those who want to cast them. I’m hired for my opinion, but ultimately, I don’t make the final decisions.
But what I can control is who I audition and how I confront my own learned and unconscious biases.
As a Casting Director, I commit to:
Seek out the work of actors from equity-seeking groups, thereby expanding my circle of known talent
Challenge the preconceived notions of race, gender, orientation, ability, age, accent, etc., in the projects I cast such as who can play the romantic lead or what a family unit should look like
Ensure actors from equity-seeking groups are being seen for all roles while also being mindful that casting choices can reinforce negative stereotypes or perpetuate existing inequalities
Every month, I am going to challenge myself to ensure my door is always open and that I’m actively engaging with the immense diversity of Toronto's actors. This will include Q&A sessions, audition workshops and panels, but I am open to suggestions for more. I am listening and I am committed.
I know I can do better. This is just the start.
Jesse Griffiths - Casting Director
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