In a bold and unprecedented move, the Academy President, Cheryl Boone Isaacs has penned a moving statement on the lack of diversity in the 2016 Oscars nominations. This year’s nominations has been greeted with jeers over the exclusion of non-white actors in the nominations with the #OscarsSoWhite rearing its head again this year.
Cheryl in a statement released by the academy said “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. This is a difficult but important conversation, and it’s time for big changes. The Academy is taking dramatic steps to alter the makeup of our membership. In the coming days and weeks we will conduct a review of our membership recruitment in order to bring about much-needed diversity in our 2016 class and beyond.”
She further stated that “as many of you 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”
“This isn’t unprecedented for the Academy. In the ‘60s and ‘70s it was about recruiting younger members to stay vital and relevant. In 2016, the mandate is inclusion in all of its facets: gender, race, ethnicity and sexual orientation. We recognize the very real concerns of our community, and I so appreciate all of you who have reached out to me in our effort to move forward together”, Cheryl stated.
Earlier after the nominations were made public, actors Jada Pinkett Smith and Spike Lee both announced that they will be boycotting the Oscars as a result of the exclusion of non-white actors for a second straight year after all 20 acting nominees were white actors.
This year’s event will hold on Sunday, February 28, 2016 at Dolby Theatre, the Hollywood & Highland Centre honouring movies released in 2015.