It's been exactly one year since the #MeToo movement shook up Hollywood — and the patriarchy worldwide.
Now the most powerful women in the international television industry say they are seeing the beginnings of real change in a business long dominated by straight white men. "#MeToo was a long-overdue reckoning of a systematic problem of misogyny at all levels of our industry," says Catherine Tait, the first woman to run the CBC, Canada's public broadcast giant. "At last we have the inclusion rider in our productions — thanks to Frances McDormand."
“People, men and women, have become a little more thoughtful, a little more reflective, in the boardroom, in hiring decisions, in the question of pay,” adds Rola Bauer, managing director of StudioCanal TV, noting however, that, in the television business, real power “comes from who controls the purse strings,” and advising ambitious women to "build their own thing" if they want to shake things up at the very top. "There is no such thing as a creative risk," says Anne Mensah, head of drama at Sky in the U.K. "Being boring is more likely to make an audience switch off than being creatively forward thinking. That’s got to be an exciting place to be."
Shaking things up is what the women on THR's annual list of the world's most powerful female television execs do best. They share their insights on the rapid changes in the global TV landscape and the challenges they face in continuing the push beyond the status quo.
Ariston Anderson, Patrick Brzeski, Agustin Mango, Rhonda Richford, Alex Ritman and Etan Vlessing contributed to this report.