A reality show that planned to pit activists against each other in an X-Factor-style contest judged by celebrities will be drastically “reinvented” after it sparked a backlash from activists.
The activist, which had aired in the United States at the end of October, sparked disbelief among many activists and elsewhere when its format was revealed last week, with many labeling it a “deaf” distortion of the values of the true activists.
Now, after one of the stars lined up to judge the contest and joined in the criticism and admitted that she was “unqualified” for the role, the producers gave in to the pressure and returned to the drawing board.
Global Citizen, the international advocacy organization co-producing the show, said: “Global activism is about collaboration and cooperation, not competition. We apologize to the activists, the hosts and the activist community in general, we were wrong. “
Instead of having six activists compete with each other, with their efforts judged by singer Usher, actress Priyanka Chopra and dancer Julianne Hough, the show will now be a documentary showing their “tireless work,” he said.
“The Activist was designed to show a wide audience the passion, long hours and ingenuity that activists put into changing the world, in hopes of inspiring others to do the same,” said a joint statement from CBS. and its production partners Global Citizen and Live. Nation.
“However, it has become apparent that the program format, as advertised, distracts from the vital work that these incredible activists do in their communities every day. Driving global change is not a competition and requires a global effort.
“As a result, we are changing the format to remove the competitive element and reinvent the concept in a special primetime documentary (air date to be announced). It will showcase the tireless work of six activists and the impact they have in championing causes in which they deeply believe. Each activist will receive a cash grant for the organization of their choice, as planned for the original program. “
On Tuesday, Hough released a lengthy statement on Instagram acknowledging people’s objections to the show, including that it “felt like the Olympics of Oppression, and completely missed and disrespected the many activists who have been killed, assaulted. and faced with various abuses that fight for their causes. ” .
She added: “I do not pretend to be an activist and I fully agree that the judging aspect of the show did not hit the mark and furthermore that I am not qualified to act as a judge.”