Academy Takes Action to Increase Diversity

Article by Alexandra Hernandez | esPResso Committee Member

On Sunday, February 28, the stars of Hollywood graced the red carpet for the most anticipated night of the year for the world of entertainment. Eighty million viewers watched as women dazzled in their custom-designed gowns, and men flashed their most charming grins at the Oscars. Every actor, actress, director, producer, and fan was on their toes throughout the night as each award was presented.

Chris Rock, the designated host of the 88th Oscars, focused his opening monologue on the racial issues faced by African-Americans today. Some of his more notable comments include: “I’m here at the Academy Awards, otherwise known as the White People’s Choice Awards” and “This is the wildest, craziest Oscars to ever host, because we’ve got all this controversy… no black nominees…” (Rock). Throughout the show, the issue of racial discrimination remained an exhaustive theme.

However, there has been undeniable discontent with Academy since the list of 2016 nominees was released. To deal with the situation, the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences approved a series of substantial changes designed to to make membership, governing bodies, and voting members more diverse within the Academy.

The Public Relations team for the Academy released a statement claiming in order to increase diversity on the Board of Governors as soon as possible, the President of the Academy will create three new active seats. Immediate action to add new non-governor members to the executive and board committees will also be taken.

These efforts are starting grounds to change within the Academy, as well as change regarding diversity within Hollywood.


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