A Statement from Sean Clarke on Diversity, Inclusion and Representation at Aardman

Aardman is committed to ensuring that our workplaces are inclusive and free from any type of discrimination, but we recognise that we have much more work to do to achieve representation throughout our workforce and increase the level of on-screen diversity in our future projects. This is particularly true regarding representation of race, which is something we have been thinking about and interrogating ourselves about even more since the #BlackoutTuesday movement and Black Lives Matter protests that have followed the death of George Floyd.

We commit to taking real action to bring about change at the studio and – equally importantly – to using our voice to help bring about change in our industry.

We had already instilled a stronger remit on diversity in our development slate and are working with organisations including WECA (Creative Workforce for the Future), Access VFX and Calling the Shots/BFI Animation Bootcamp, among others, around increasing diversity and access to the industry. We are overhauling our policy on work experience and opening up the Aardman Academy for scholarships and internship programmes, to name a few initiatives… But we know that this is just the start and that we must do more.

This is more than just a directive from the Exec Board; we commit now to a step change in how we do business and expect all those at the studio to embrace this. I will be working closely with our Diversity Taskforce over the coming weeks to get feedback, support and ideas from the wider studio in order to develop further tangible actions… and, more importantly, deliver on them. We are open to talking to all employees and partners about ideas they might have around this subject.

We commit to sharing our plans and learnings in an open and transparent way, with a view to encouraging our business partners to support our initiatives and inspiring further action across the industry.

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