After moving to LA at the age of 23 with hopes of becoming a music producer, Tracey Edmonds went on to produce hit films like Soul Food  and several reality shows on BET and TV One. Through it all, she told Mediabistro, it was her race more than her gender that complicated her pursuit of producing.

“I think the biggest problem is still the issue of color. There are still only a few slots on the entire release schedule for African-Americans,” she said. “Tyler Perry has maybe three films in that block, and that leaves the rest of us to kind of vie for those other spots.”

That’s not to say that women have it easy in Hollywood. Edmonds, who recently founded the online venture Alright TV, suggested that aspiring female producers develop a stiff upper lip. “I encourage young women to be empowered and independent and not rely on other people to fulfill their dreams.”

Read more in So What Do You Do, Tracey Edmonds, Award-Winning TV and Film Producer?

Nicholas Braun