The protagonist of Number Zero hopes that the series will help accelerate people’s acceptance of Italy as a multicultural country.
Milan- The Netflix series “Zero”, which premiered in the world last month, is Italy’s first TV show with black as the main feature. The clarity flickers in the bleak TV landscape, where the constant use of racist language and images has triggered New protests.
Although “zero” represents a breakthrough in the history of Italian television, on private networks, comedians claim that they have the right to use racism and squinting gestures in satire. The main national broadcaster RAI has come under fire for trying to censor the comments of an Italian rapper who emphasized the homophobia of right-wing parties. And under external pressure, RAI recommends but does not completely prohibit the use of black faces in imitation shows (smearing faces is considered a racist practice in the United States).
In the context of increased cultural tensions, the protagonists of “Zero” hope that the second-generation black Italian character series will be based on the novels of the sons of Angolan immigrants, which will help accelerate the public’s perception of Italy as a multicultural country. Acceptance.
“I always say that Italy is a country tied to tradition, not a racist,” Antonio Dickler Di Stefano said. Children of immigrants in Italy.
He said: “I firmly believe that through these things-the possibility of writing novels and making series novels-things can be changed.”
“Zero” is a fundamental change, because it sets an example for young black Italians who have not yet been reflected in the culture, and because it creates a window for changes in Italian society that have not been affected by most. Human approval.
Activists fighting racism on Italian television emphasized that it was developed by US-based Netflix, which promised to spend $100 million to improve diversity, rather than being developed by Italian public or private television stations.
Activist and journalist Sara Lemlem said: “As a black Italian, I have never seen myself appear on Italian television. Instead, I have seen examples of black women’s excessive sexualization.” Protest against racism on Italian TV. “There has never been a black woman acting like a black woman: a black student, a black nurse, a black teacher. In the country where I was born and raised, I have never seen a representative of myself.”
“Zero”, which premiered on April 21, immediately stood out among the top ten TV shows with the highest ratings on Italian Netflix.
Perhaps more revealing its impact: less than a week, when the protagonist Giuseppe Dave Seke (Giuseppe Dave Seke) was sought after by a group of Italian school children, they asked for autographs, while being interviewed near Milan where the show took place . Seke, 25, is the son of Congolese parents who grew up in Padua and is not well known in Italy. “Zero” represents his acting debut.
“If you ask these children in front of them, they will never tell you: the first black Italian actor. They will tell you’superhero’, or they will say’Dave’,” Dikele Distefano looked at the scene. Surprised.
In the series, “Zero” is the nickname of a black Italian who works as a pizza delivery man on a bicycle and discovers that he has superpowers that can make him invisible. He used it to help his friends in a biracial community in Milan.
The series adopts the concept of invisibility, which is the basis of the “Black Life Issue” protests that broke out in Italian squares after the murder of George Floyd in the United States last summer. Black Italians have called for changes to the country’s citizenship laws and are recognized as part of a society where they often feel marginalized.
Seke said: “When a young man is not seen, he feels a little invisible.” “Hopefully this series can help those who feel like me or Antonio… There may be many people who have not found someone similar to them. And continue to endure this pain.”
The protest movement has shifted from targeting Italian fashion (racist errors highlighting the lack of black creative workers) to Italian television. The self-proclaimed CambieRAI movement held a protest last month, demanding that national television and the Italian private sector stop using racist language. And the black face in imitation.
It is imperative for CambieRAI to combine the name of the Italian national television station RAI with the Italian word “you are about to change”. The movement brings together second-generation Italians from various associations, and it also hopes to establish a diversity and inclusion advisory committee through RAI funded by a mandatory annual fee for anyone who owns a TV in Italy.
Last week, RAI responded to an earlier request from some other well-known organizations, asking it to stop broadcasting shows that use black faces, and citing skits in which the artists would darken their skin, like the singer Beyonce or Like Ghali, an Italian rapper of Tunisian descent.
Giovanni Parapini, RAI’s social business director, told The Associated Press: “We are sorry, and we formally promise to notify all editors not to use black faces.” He pointed out that because of editorial freedom, they can’t do more.
The association stated that even if the required ban is not met, they still believe that compromise is positive, because RAI at least admits that the use of black faces is a problem.
However, Parapini said that the public broadcaster does not accept the criticism of the CambieRAI team, “because it means that RAI has not done anything for integration in these years.”
He pointed out that the regulator has never convened the network, nor did it list shows including ethnic minorities, from Gambia-born sports host Idris in the 1990s to July with the second generation of Italians. Carry out a TV festival plan.
Dikele Distefano stated that his goal was not to ban racist language, which he called “a lost battle.” He believes that his art is the driving force of change.
Now he is making a movie, in which he plans to have 70% of the second generation Italian actors and staff. He pointed out that “Zero” has helped establish an industry position among black designers, black screenwriters, and directors of Arab and Italian descent.
He said: “Fighting is about living in a place where everyone has the same opportunities, where there are more blacks, Asian and South American writers, and it is possible to tell stories from the perspective of the people who live.” Summary.