A group of African-American civil rights leaders plan to hold a protest in Hollywood outside Sunday’s Oscars show, where all of this year’s 20 acting nominees are white, AFP reports.
Earl Ofari Hutchinson, head of the L.A. Urban Policy Roundtable group, says the purpose of the demonstration is to draw attention to Hollywood’s diversity problem. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which awards Oscars, is comprised of voting members who are overwhelmingly white and an average age of 60, the report says.
“The goal of the protest is to send a message to the Academy, send a message to Hollywood, send a message to the film industry,” Hutchinson says, writes AFP. “And the message is very simple: you don’t reflect America; your industry doesn’t reflect America. Women, Hispanics, African-Americans, people of color (are) invisible in Hollywood.”
Some of this year’s snubs include Britain’s David Oyelowo, who was widely praised for his role as Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma. The film’s director Ava DuVernay, was also left out, though the movie is among eight picture nominees, the report notes.
After an uproar over the lack of black Oscar nominees in 2015, the Academy Award’s first African American president, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, said she was encouraged to accelerate reforms to make the awards more inclusive.