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News | 10 Sep 2021

‘Black to Front:’ Vodafone supports Channel 4’s project to boost diversity in TV

On 10 September, all Channel 4 programming is being fronted entirely by black talent, featuring black contributors and produced by black talent off-screen, in a first for national television.

Vodafone’s ‘Together We Can’ advert will run seven times throughout the day, with a prime slot during Celebrity Gogglebox, one of 65 ads which feature either a black lead or majority black cast.

Well-known Channel 4 shows will feature the best of black British talent alongside new programming, from teen soap opera Hollyoaks to new topical debate show, Unapologetic, hosted by YouTube star Zeze Millz.

Veteran news anchor Sir Trevor McDonald hosts Countdown, while comedian Mo Gilligan joins AJ Odudu on The Big Breakfast. And former Spice Girl Mel B takes over the midday chat-show, Packed Lunch.

  • Read the full schedule here.

Behind the scenes, Channel 4 is working with the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity to ensure that the project has a lasting impact, helping more black talent to work in and progress through the TV industry.

The channel hopes that the day will help “to normalise black talent on our screens, not just through our shows but in every single ad break across the day.

“Friday’s output will not only entertain viewers but also stimulate an important national conversation about Black portrayal and representation.”

Maria Koutsoudakis, Vodafone’s Head of Brand in the UK agreed: “We’re thrilled to support Channel 4’s Black to Front project, airing our Together We Can message alongside the brilliant black talent we have in the UK, In front of and behind the camera.

Events like this allow to us to ask frank questions about what more we can do to diversify our industries and make them fair and inclusive for all.”

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