Belfast Telegraph

David Harewood notes diversity improvement since Oscars

David Harewood would love to see Idris Elba take on the role of James Bond as it would "shed a different light" on the iconic spy character.

David Harewood has noticed a "real boom" in the amount of parts for black actors following the Oscars diversity row.

Stars such as Will and Jada Pinkett Smith opted to boycott the Academy Awards last month (Feb16) following the lack of black nominees. Since then, there have been significant attempts to increase diversity in Hollywood, and Supergirl actor David has noticed a change.

"Since the Oscars there has been a real boom in scripts and parts for black actors and black actresses which is fantastic," David said during an interview on This Morning on Tuesday (22Mar16). "There are some great parts coming through for black actresses, and we really do need to catch up here, because studio heads seem to be getting the message that there's not only an audience out there but there is also a desire to see people of colour in essential roles and authoritative roles - because they're great actors and because there's a demand for it. There's a real demand to see diversity on screen."

David, 50, has enjoyed roles on the small screen in series such as Homeland and the recent The Night Manager, as well as movies including The Merchant of Venice and Blood Diamond. He splits his time between the U.S. and his native England, but admits the British acting world still has a long way to go in terms of its diversity inclusion.

"Again Idris (Elba) has work, Adrian (Lester) I think is doing a show on BBC One now so that's two," he explained. "But in America on television it's countless. And it would be nice to work with other black actors. It's me or Idris, or it's Idris or… We have such a strong generation of black actors in this country, it would be wonderful for us all to work together on something."

One role both David and 43-year-old Idris are tipped to be in line for is that of James Bond. But while David acknowledges the role would be a once in a lifetime opportunity, he is keen to see The Wire star Idris play the super spy.

"I'd like to see Idris have a go," David added. "It would just be so, so different and I think it would shed a different light on the whole character."

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