One Shade of Oscar

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In the last couple weeks, the Oscars have been the subject of heated topic, ridicule, and criticism. The nominees for this year’s Oscars were announced on Thursday, January 14, 2016. After the nominees were announced, a storm of media frenzy began almost immediately; #whiteoscars began trending worldwide.    

You may be asking what is the meaning of this media outrage? The reason is, for the second year in a row, the Oscar nominations have failed to recognize  any minority actors. Most of the outrage comes from the aspect that movies regarding black lives such as “Creed” and “Straight Outta Compton” only got recognition for their white participants. Their black counterparts such as O’Shea Jackson Jr, Jason Mitchell, Corey Hawkins, and more did not. Only the white writers for “Straight Outta Compton” received nominations, while in “Creed” only Sylvester Stallone’s performance was recognized. Under these circumstances many were outraged that the black directors and actors of these films did not receive any sort of recognition for their work.

Due to the social media outburst of #whiteoscars, the Academy President, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, announced that she promised a review of recruitment efforts. She went on to say that these circumstances have highlighted the need to change the way the Academy operates.

Celebrities have had big things to say about this heated topic. Jada Pinkett Smith and Spike Lee announced they would be boycotting the Oscars this year due to the nominations failure to recognize minorities. Even Matt Damon weighed in, stating that the academy’s move to diversify its voting members of the academy is a wonderful step but there’s still, “a long, long, long way to go.” Not only have people taken a serious tone towards this topic, but comedians have gone with comedy to tackle  this topic. In typical SNL fashion, the show spoofed the Oscars showing only white nominee actors and clips of their minimal roles in films. After the clips were shown, the “actors” were seen next to their not so amused diverse co-stars. To get the message across on SNL’s stance on the lack of diversity when the winners were announced, Cecily Strong announced the winner for Best Actor was “The White Guys.”snl oscars

President Obama stated his opinion on diversity, going on to explain, “It makes for better entertainment. It makes everybody feel part of one American family. So I think, as a whole, the industry should do what every other industry should do — which is to look for talent, provide opportunity to everybody.”

 

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