One of society's great strengths is in its diversity, and this is something to be celebrated and reflected in the films that we watch and make. Indeed, diversity within the film industry has been a hot topic of debate this year both on screen and behind the scenes. From the ‘#OscarsSoWhite' campaign, to movements for equality for women working in the industry, high profile stars have been outspoken in their belief that more needs to be done to ensure that the diverse spectrum of the human experience is aptly represented on film and elsewhere, and that the need for parity in all areas of the industry is acknowledged and actioned.

We'll be using film to encourage discussion and awareness of issues surrounding diversity, focusing primarily on five different elements: ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status.

Ethnic diversity will be a major focus of the theme as we support Black History Month, which takes place throughout the month of October. In addition, our diversity theme will also complement the BFI's latest blockbuster season, Black Star, which focuses on the achievements of black stars from the earliest years of cinema through to the present day, whilst exploring why opportunities to shine on screen have been historically limited for black actors. We will also be celebrating International Day of the Girl in October and UK Disability History Month from November 22 - December 22.

The upcoming Into Film Festival (November 9 - 25) has themes of diversity woven throughout the programme, with two strands tying in directly in See It; Be It and Black Star. Both these strands are highlighted by major new film releases this year.

The Festival's Black Star strand, in partnership with the BFI's autumn blockbuster season of the same name, embraces the BFI's direction of illuminating on-screen talent. Featuring British stars of black heritage - as well as actors and actresses from the African diaspora from across film history - our strand will focus on talent and films that resonate with our young audience, and that are engaging and relevant for educators using film in the classroom.

Along with corresponding elements of the Into Film Festival, we will allow club leaders and educators to explore issues surrounding diversity in their clubs and in the classroom. We already have an extensive catalogue of Resources and News and Views articles relating to the different elements of diversity, and we will be adding to these with lots of new content - including new Resources and Film Lists - throughout the Autumn.

Explore all of our Diversity content below.

Still from training video - kids in class.

Filmmaking Training

Enable students to reflect on the ideas raised by the theme through filmmaking.

Children watching Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in class

Into Film Clubs

Clubs provide communal spaces for film watching and discussion.

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