Oscars 2016: 7 Celebs Criticizing or Boycotting the Academy Awards
After the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences only nominated white actors in the Oscars 2016 acting categories — for the second year in a row, no less — the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag went viral yet again.
And celebs joined the rallying cry — criticizing the mostly white, mostly male, mostly old Academy. Some even vowed to boycott this years Academy Awards ceremony.
Here are their criticisms, in their own words.
Jada Pinkett Smith
This Gotham star announced in a Facebook video she won’t be attending or even watching the Oscars this year, and not just because husband Will Smith wasn’t nominated for his critically-acclaimed role in Concussion.
“Begging for acknowledgement, or even asking, diminishes dignity and diminishes power,” she told viewers.
“And we are a dignified people, and we are powerful. So let’s let the Academy do them, with all grace and love. And let’s do us, differently.”
“The Academy Awards is not where the ‘real” battle is,” the Chi-Raq director wrote on Instagram, while announcing his intentions to boycott this year’s ceremony.
“It’s in the executive office of the Hollywood studios and TV and cable networks … People, the truth is we ain’t in those rooms, and until minorities are, the Oscar nominees will remain lily white.”
This English actor — who was denied an Oscar nomination last year for his leading performance in Selma — spoke out against the Academy’s exclusionary practices at a gala honoring its president, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, who has also expressed frustration (and who happens to be black).
“For 20 opportunities to celebrate actors of color, actresses of color, to be missed last year is one thing; for that to happen again this year is unforgivable,” he said, per Yahoo.
“This institution doesn’t reflect its president, and it doesn’t reflect this room. I am an Academy member and it doesn’t reflect me, and it doesn’t reflect this nation.”
Cuba Gooding Jr.
“You want it to be diverse. You want the work to show,” this American Crime Story star told Variety.
“I wanted Straight Outta Compton to get something. But, you know, it’s this conversation that makes people think harder when the nominations come around for next year.”
“You also have to look at the diversity on the Academy’s board,” this Jane the Virgin star told Entertainment Tonight. “It’s not as diverse as reflected in today's society. [We’ve] got to fix that.”
Rev. Al Sharpton
Action is more valuable than words for this longtime civil rights leader and political commentator.
All white Oscar nominations are another example of the lack of diversity in Hollywood. Like the Rocky Mts. The higher u climb the whiter.Reverend Al Sharpton (@TheRevAl) January 14, 2016
Hollywood has a fraudulent image of progressive and liberal politics and policies. We must take direct action to correct this. Talk is cheapReverend Al Sharpton (@TheRevAl) January 14, 2016
This House of Lies star tweeted Chris Rock, this year’s Oscar host, to joke he will be at the ceremony… but perhaps not in the auditorium.
The 88th Academy Awards air Sunday, February 28, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.