#Oscarssowhite is Back and Bigger than Ever

The Oscar nominations have arrived… And so has the heated dispute. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is once again facing severe criticism over the fact that all of the nominated actors are white for a second year in a row. Numerous big names in the industry like Lupita Nyong’o, David Oyelowo and others have publicly expressed their displeasure, while director Spike Lee and actress Jada Pinkett Smith have called for boycott. However, Smith quickly came under attack herself, as the former “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” star Janet Hubert panned her stance against the Oscars in a video posted on YouTube: “I find it ironic that somebody who has made their living and made millions and millions of dollars from the very people you’re talking about boycotting, just because you didn’t get a nomination, just because you didn’t win,” said Hubert, hinting at the fact that Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith’s husband, was not nominated this year despite expectations.

The issue sparked controversy with social media users as well. While some supported the backlash against the Academy, others expressed their frustration over the fact that the quarrel has started once again, stating that “there has not been any Oscar-worthy performances by black actors the past year and nominating someone only because of their skin color is unjust.” In contrast, numerous individuals, who didn’t hide their anger over the lack of diversity, stated that the problem is not in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences but in Hollywood, where not enough roles, especially Oscar-worthy roles, are made for black actors. World famous actress and comedian, Whoopi Goldberg has nearly the same point of view, saying that people should complain about the absence of diversity in films all the time and not only when the Oscar nominations are due – “Why is this a conversation that we only have once a year? Every year we get all fired up and the rest of the year nobody says anything,” said Goldberg on ‘The View.’

Shortly after the discord breakout, The Academy President, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, publicly apologized for the absence of black nominees and promised big changes in the near future. “I’d like to acknowledge the wonderful work of this year’s nominees. While we celebrate their extraordinary achievements, I am both heartbroken and frustrated about the lack of inclusion… As many of you may know, we have implemented changes to diversify our membership in the last four years. But the change is not coming as fast as we would like. We need to do more, and better and more quickly,” she said.

So, what changes are on the way? And how will the lack of diversity affect the show’s ratings? We’ll soon find out.

For the full list of nominees visit www.oscar.go.com

Beqa Kirtava

21 January 2016 22:13