#OscarsSoWhite boycott results in major changes
With the 2016 Academy Awards approaching, nominees, entertainers and host Chris Rock have been preparing for the glitz and glam of the night. However, there is a group of people who, although they have been invited to the awards show, don’t seem to be preparing with much excitement. Actress Jada Pinkett Smith has called for a boycott of the Oscars.
She first mentioned a boycott on Jan. 16, officially claiming it in a follow-up video on Facebook Jan. 18.
“At the Oscars, people of color are always welcomed to give out awards and even entertain, but we are rarely recognized for our artistic accomplishments,” Pinkett Smith wrote on Twitter Jan. 16. Should people of color refrain from participating all together?” “I can’t help but ask the question — Is it time that people of color recognize how much power, infl uence that we have amassed?”
Pink Smith said in her video on Facebook two days later.
“We no longer need to ask to be invited anywhere. The Academy has the right to acknowledge whomever they choose. To invite whomever they choose. And now I think that it’s our responsibility now to make the change.”
As far as this controversy goes, other stars have put in their two cents regarding their stance on the boycott. The outrage over the exclusion of people of color prompted the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite to start trending on Twitter. With the controversy brewing closer and closer to the airing of the awards show, it will be a show in itself to see who doesn’t attend and who shows up despite what they had to say regarding the situation
As a result, the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences approved a significant amount of changes regarding the situation Thursday, Jan. 21, and are now designing to make the Academy more diverse. This movement to incorporate more people of color and women in nominees is a goal to be set in place by 2020.
“The Academy is going to lead and not wait for the industry to catch up,” said Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs in a statement. “These new measures regarding governance and voting will have an immediate impact and begin the process of signifi cantly changing our membership composition.”
Beginning later this year, each new member’s voting status will last 10 years, and will be renewed if that new member has been active in motion pictures during that decade. In addition, members will receive lifetime voting rights after three ten-year terms, or if they have won or been nominated for an Academy Award. The Academy will also take immediate action to increase diversity by adding new members, who are not Governors, to its executive and board committees, where key decisions about membership and governance are made. This will allow new members an opportunity to become more active in Academy decision-making and help the organization identify and nurture future leaders.