Changing Narrative and Society

The World around us is diverse and colourful and half of it are women.

Overall however, films and television  have not been reflecting this reality. Films and programmes, fictional and non-fictional, are characterized by a strong male majority onscreen. Whether it’s talk shows, sports or feature films, the focus is far more often on  men, women are less present. This imbalance has been going on for so long that most of the time we don’t even notice it any more. So we grow up with fewer images of women in the media and in fictional productions, and also with them being less diverse in character, profession, age, ethnicity etc.
This lack of range in the narratives of film and television also affects the social reality around us. There are far too few role models, inspirations and frictions – for women and men, girls and boys.
Against this background, German actress Belinde Ruth Stieve invented NEROPA Neural Roles Parity in 2016.

The Gender & Diversity Tool NEROPA is a new methd to reduce gender imbalance in a straightforward, systematic and low-threshold manner.

Most stories and scripts contain a number of big or small neutral roles, i.e. characters whose gender is not significant to the plot, but which are more often than not written as males. With NEROPA theses roles are detected and defined and cast gender equal.

As a result, more women will appear on screen, and also more women with normal or unusual jobs (plumber, archeologist, IT engineer). They will more likely be defined by their actions and not in relation to other characters (wife, mother, lover, daughter). More women in front of the camera will lead to multi-faceted, more exciting, up-to-date films, both for women and men (see NEROPA Method).

With the subsequent use of the NEROPA Finetuning, the cast can be diversified further, making underrepresented communities visible, regarding age, ethnicity, body image, colour, sexuality, (dis-)ability, accent / dialect etc.. This will lead to  truer representation and more possible identfication for people from a variety of backgrounds and ages (see NEROPA Finetuning).

The  principles of NEROPA can also be employed right from the start, during script development, when writing a script, thus preventing final scripts from being – unintentionally – male biased (see NEROPA during Script Development).

 

I’m happy to convey the NEROPA method inside and outside the film industry. I am also available to consult and coach  productions companies and their teams who want to work with NEROPA. (see Presentations – Workshops and Biography / Contact.).

Belinde Ruth Stieve