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Midway through their first year as co-presidents of the Producers Guild, Gail Berman and Lucy Fisher are pleased with their guild’s progress tackling some of the industry’s thorniest issues — sexual harassment and inequality among them — but fully aware how much more work needs to be done.
Luckily, as producers and former studio bosses, they pride themselves on their problem-solving abilities.
Allegations - Producer - Harvey - Weinstein - October
When allegations about producer Harvey Weinstein surfaced in October 2017, they joined the guild’s Anti-Sexual Harassment Task Force, helping to formulate guidelines to combat such harassment in time for last year’s PGA Awards. Last June, they were elected co-presidents, taking over the role from Lori McCreary and Gary Lucchesi.
Berman and Fisher are the first female pairing in the role — and fully aware of that significance. They bring a wealth of leadership experience to the presidency: Fisher, a former vice chair at Sony, runs Red Wagon Entertainment with her husband, Doug Wick, while Berman, former head of Fox Broadcasting Co. and Paramount Pictures, is co-owner of the Jackal Group production company.
Moment - Time - Difference - Fisher
“I think I can speak for both of us that we felt we were in a moment in time where we could actually make a difference, so that was very appealing to us,” Fisher says.
She and Berman are heading to the Jan. 19 PGA Awards with a new initiative intended to further cut down on sexual harassment. Called the Independent Production Safety Initiative, it will provide free training and advice to smaller productions that have more than 20 workers but no HR or legal department conversant in the issues. Funding comes from a $2 million grant from CBS, which last month disbursed $20 million earmarked for former chair Les Moonves’ severance to a series of organizations working to combat sexual harassment in the workplace.
Leaders - Program - PGA
The leaders consider the program a PGA...
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