How do we gauge diversity in the film industry? A movie has many facets: its onscreen performers, its offscreen creative and technical talent, the story it tells, its budget, box-office returns, MPAA ratings—the list goes on.

There’s enough movie data that we can start to comprehensively quantify the state of diversity in the film industry, past and present. Arlene is working with producers from Mighteor, a Boulder-based documentary film company, to develop a Data-Driven Algorithm for Encouraging Media Equity (DAEME), a way to rate movies based on representation of underrepresented groups, rather than viewer opinions. This kind of rating could be crucial for film-related ticket and merchandise sales in the current age of civil protest. The prototype algorithm reflects some of the major factors: gender, race, and ethnicity metrics in cast, crew, and script. Data sources include The Movie Database, Genderize, US Census Surnames,, and DAEME’s internal databases.