Empire State Development Hosts Sixth New York State Multicultural Creativity Summit to Encourage Broader Diversity and Inclusion Within the State’s Entertainment Industry

October 25, 2022

Event Co-Hosted with the Motion Picture Association, The New York Latino Film Festival, and the Governor’s Office of Motion Picture & Television Development

Hybrid Forum Connected Content Creators with Entertainment Industry Leaders for Career Advice and Guidance

Empire State Development (ESD) today held the sixth annual New York State Multicultural Creativity Summit, an in-person and virtual interactive conference that guides content creators of diverse backgrounds to better understand and advance their careers within the film and television industry. Hosted by the Governor’s Office of Motion Picture & Television Development (MPTV) and the Motion Picture Association in partnership with the New York Latino Film Festival, the event displays New York State’s commitment to promote the inclusion of diverse voices in the entertainment industry.

Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Hope Knight said, “ESD is proud to support the Multicultural Creativity Summit and provide opportunities through inclusionary programming that helps underrepresented communities navigate the growing film and television industry. Under Governor Hochul’s leadership, New York State continues to break down barriers to promote opportunity and equitable economic growth for all.”

The MPTV works closely with studios, non-profit organizations and film festival curators to promote New York State’s talent and help expand pathways for aspiring filmmakers, writers and producers. The interactive summit featured panel discussions that provided advice and guidance for diverse content creators looking to advance their careers in the film and television industry.

Speakers at the event included: Brett King, Vice President of Creative Programming, Diversity & Inclusion at Sony Pictures Entertainment; Mahin Ibrahim, Director of Representation and Inclusion Strategies for Disney Studios Content; Dennis Williams, Senior Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility at Warner Bros. Discovery; and Tiffany Burrell-Lewis, Director of Creative Talent Development for Netflix.

This was the sixth Multicultural Creativity Summit, and the first to be hosted in-person since 2020. The first three events were hosted in May 2017 (HBO Theatre), October 2018 (HBO Theatre), and December 2019 (SkySquare Conference Center at Viacom) – all in New York City. In November 2020 and December 2021, the event was presented virtually.

Charles Rivkin, Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association, said, “The Motion Picture Association and our member studios are at the forefront of building diversity and inclusion in the film and television industry. Storytelling cannot flourish in this country unless all stories can be authentically told. We are proud to co-host this summit once again with the New York Latino Film Festival and help generate paths for diverse creators throughout our industry.”

Calixto Chinchilla, Founder and Executive Director of the New York Latino Film Festival, said, “It is remarkable to join the Motion Picture Association and Empire State Development in amplifying the voices of underrepresented creators in the industry. New York State continues to embrace diversity and our commitment to showcasing Latino talent and culture to build proper representation in the film community.”

Today’s Summit is part of a larger statewide initiative to increase diversity and inclusion and create equal opportunities in the film and television industry.

In April 2022, Governor Hochul passed a three-year extension of the Film Tax Credit Program that includes a new requirement for productions to create and implement plans to ensure their productions represent the diversity of New York State, starting in 2023. New York State is home to the first-in-the-nation New York Entertainment Workforce Diversity Grant Program. Launched in April 2021, the program provides financial assistance in the form of grants for job creation and training programs that support efforts to recruit, hire, promote, retain, develop and train a diverse and inclusive workforce for the motion picture and television production and post-production industries in New York State. Additionally, the Film & TV Diverse Suppliers Directory was created to increase diversity throughout New York’s thriving entertainment industry; helping to connect productions with quality vendors throughout the state and helping local businesses reap the benefits of working with this growing industry.

About The Governor’s Office of Motion Picture & Television Development
The New York State Governor’s Office of Motion Picture & Television Development, a division of Empire State Development, aims to grow and support the film, television and commercial industry by guiding filmmakers through the many programs and assets New York State has to offer, promoting and publicizing the state’s infrastructure, talent and film production, post-production, and commercial tax incentives for qualified expenditures in New York State. The office also serves as a liaison between production companies and city and local governments, state agencies, a network of statewide contacts, local film offices and professional location scouts and managers. More information on filming in New York State or the Film Production and Post Production Tax Credit Programs can be found here.

About Empire State Development
Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency. The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing the Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I LOVE NY,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, please visit
www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov and www.esd.ny.gov.

About The Motion Picture Association
The Motion Picture Association, Inc. (MPA) serves as the global voice and advocate of the motion picture, home video, and television industries. It works in every corner of the globe to advance the creative industry, protect its members’ content across all screens, defend the creative and artistic freedoms of storytellers, and support innovative distribution models that bring an expansion of viewing choices to audiences around the world.

Its member studios are: Netflix Studios, LLC; Paramount Pictures Corporation; Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.; Universal City Studios LLC; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures; and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Charles Rivkin is Chairman and CEO.