Trevor Phillips will discuss race and multiculturalism with former prime minister Tony Blair and Ukip leader Nigel Farage in an Outline Productions documentary for Channel 4.
The 75-minute film, The Things We Won’t Say About Race That Are True, will explore why the UK is uneasy about discussing race and diversity issues and also confront truths about racial stereotypes and hostility towards immigrants and ethnic groups.
Phillips, broadcaster and deputy chair of the board of the National Equality Standard, will talk to Farage about whether an increasingly multi-ethnic Britain has contributed to the rise of the party. He will also quiz Blair about Labour’s support for diversity and equality.
Ex-England footballer Les Ferdinand will also feature in the documentary to highlight racial issues in the sport.
The co-production with Windrush indie Pepper Productions will see Phillips argue for the implementation of sophisticated ethnic monitoring of society and a willingness to talk about the data captured as a way of normalising the conversation.
C4 head of specialist factual David Glover commissioned The Things We Won’t Say About Race That Are True. It was executive produced by Outline creative director Helen Veale, the wife of Phillips, and produced and directed by Simon Finch and Vicki Cooper respectively.
It is due to TX later this month.
Veale said Phillips had a “unique role in shaping equality legislation in Britain” and the documentary will “make for a powerful and challenging film”, while Phillips added that the film “points to ways in which we can say what’s on our minds without being accused of being bigots”.
Glover said the “film contains some very uncomfortable facts about race”.
“Trevor is arguably the best qualified person in the country to examine these issues. What’s fascinating is that having thought so deeply about them – he now has a very different approach to the subject than he used to.”