Most of the black community is incensed that, for the second year in a row, no black actors or actresses have receive a nomination in any of the Academy Awards movie-making categories.
On Martin Luther King’s birthday holiday, regal actress Jada Pinkett Smith made an impassioned plea for African Americans to cease and desist with prostituting “our dignity” by “asking” or “begging” for recognition from a system that, despite its first African American president of the Academy of Arts and Sciences, failed to do so — and this despite a plethora of performances and movies that merited Oscar recognition.
Listen to Pinkett Smith’s decision to boycott the Oscars — along with Spike Lee — and then take a look at the actresses of color who access Pinkett Smith’s sentiments.
“I don’t know if avoiding it altogether is going to help, but I just think we have to continue to move forward,” Niecey Nash told “Entertainment Tonight.” “We have this awareness and this spotlight — we’ve got to look at other work. There’s other work out there that I think was missed. We’ve just got to do better.”
Gina Rodriguez, meanwhile, pointed out that the voting membership of the Oscars itself, which consists mostly of older white men, needs to rectify its diversity issues.
“You also have to look at the diversity on the Academy’s board,” Rodriguez said. “It’s not as diverse as reflected in today’s society. [We’ve] got to fix that.”
Tracee Ellis Ross said that she “wasn’t planning on going anyway” to the Oscars but did clarify that, because she works in television (“Girlfriends,” “Black-ish”) she was probably not going to be invited anyway, because the award show “does not necessarily apply” to her. However, Ross did say the Critics Awards more closely resemble the cultural makeup of society.
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