CBS Boss Defends the Network's Lack of Women in New Fall Schedule

Pierre Vaugeois
Mai 19, 2017

"Are you concerned, particularly in a medium like television where women watch more than men, that you have such a male-centered [lineup]?"

"When I look at the totality of who CBS is, I look at news, I look at daytime, I look at sports, I look at Showtime, I look at The CW - they're all part of our family - and when you look at the totality of that, I think we're fine in terms of the amount of women who are behind the camera, in front of the camera", Moonves said. There are a lot of women on the schedule.

He added, "The best pilots win at the end of the day".

Moonves responded by saying: 'Well, number one, more women watch CBS, percentage-wise, than any other network, so our shows have a lot of female appeal. "I don't think we've ever had to apologize for having Madam Secretary and Lucy Liu [on Elementary], and The Good Fight [on CBS All Access] and The Good Wife".

The reporter pressed: "We're at this point in the industry - FX, for example, is trying to make sure half its directors are female".

When questioned again about the lack of females both on camera and behind the camera, and if the network was maybe headed in the 'wrong direction, ' Moonves said: 'I don't think that's the case.

We should note that, out of the six new shows being added to their schedule this fall (SEAL Team, Young Sheldon, Wisdom Of The Crowd, Me, Myself And I, 9JKL and S.W.A.T.), only one person of color features in a lead role (Shemar Moore in S.W.A.T.), and not one woman is a lead.

Overall, Moonves said, viewers (and critics) should look at the entirety of CBS Corp. "I don't think we're looking in the wrong direction". "Look a the totality of what we do", he said.

He continued: "I think we're doing a very good job".

The network debuted their new programming at their upfront in NY City this week, which features six new shows starring men. At the time, Glenn Geller, president of the entertainment division, addressed the criticism by touting the number of female and minority actors joining its shows outside lead roles. CBS has raised the episode order for the series, from 13 to 15, and said the series will premiere in the fall after its airs on the CBS network.

As CBS unveils its new fall lineup, the Eye is facing renewed scrutiny of its track record on diversity in front of and behind the camera. Let us know what you think in the comments section below!

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