Shonda Rhimes Named Variety’s Show Woman of the Year

We proudly congratulate Shonda Rhimes on being named Variety’s Show Woman Of The Year. Breaking Netflix records with the massive launch of “Bridgerton,” while overseeing multiple network series and leading her production company Shondaland into multi-platform content creation, Shonda epitomizes the highest levels of creative excellence and entrepreneurship. It should come as no surprise that she has been named Show Woman of the Year, as she has revolutionized the industry at large.

As a child, Rhymes started to show early traces of the out-of-this world imagination we’ve all come to know and love. Initially drawn to writing, Rhymes wanted to be a novelist, specifically Toni Morrison. She attended Dartmouth college where she was no stranger to theater, but always held on to her intention of writing novels upon graduating. However, her plans changed, as they seem to always do when one is called to their purpose. In the interview with Variety, Rhimes says, “I read an article that said it was harder to go to USC film school than it was to go to Harvard Law School, and my parents were academics. And I thought, ‘Well, you can’t say that’s a bad thing.’ So I applied to USC film school and got in and went.”

Since then, her career has exploded. “Grey’s Anatomy” alone has been licensed to more than 200 territories internationally and translated into more than 60 languages. The show has also been especially popular on Netflix with more viewing hours than any other licensed show on the network. Several seasons after, ABC’s Thursday lineup was branded #TGIT (Thank God It’s Thursday”) and included Shondaland shows “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal,” and “How to Get Away with Murder.” Her new venture, “Inventing Anna,” is the first show she has written for Netlfix, which will premiere in February, and “Bridgerton” will return for Season 2 in 2022.

In an interview with Variety, she shares key insights into what makes a great creator/showrunner, as well as discusses the future of Shondaland, and how she uses her prolific status to highlight underrepresented talent in her shows, and behind the scenes. Casting people of color, representing women’s sexuality as something to be celebrated, and showing LGBTQ+ characters as three-dimensional human beings are what make her truly extraordinary.

“It sounds arrogant to say it, but to me it makes me sad to have to say it,” she says. “We changed the faces that you see on television.”

A huge congratulations and thank you to Shonda Rhimes for changing the world of television as we know it.