Outraged at the lack of diversity among this year’s best acting/supporting acting Academy Awards nominees, activist Rev. Al Sharpton is calling for “direct action.” In short, he demands a total boycott and tune-out of this year’s Oscars.
“The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences made many promises last year to promote diversity in its film awards. It kept none of them. The proof is that despite a number of name, qualified black performers in major films, not one was nominated for an Academy award,” a statement posted on Sharpton’s National Action Network site said. “There’s only one thing that Hollywood understands and that’s dollars and ratings. We will launch a nationwide “TV Tune Out” of the Oscars ceremony, February 28. This will send the message that diversity in the film industry must be more than a hollow promise.”
The message is officially endorsed by the following organizations: The National Action Network Pastor K.W.Tulloss, President of the LA National Action Network, West; Los Angeles Urban Policy Roundtable President Earl Ofari Hutchinson; Weller Street Baptist Church; Compton NAACP and Project Islamic Hope.
Shortly after this year’s Oscars nominations were announced Sharpton blasted the list on his personal Twitter account.
“Hollywood has a fraudulent image of progressive and liberal politics and policies. We must take direct action to correct this,” he said. “Talk is cheap.”
He also posted: “All-white Oscar nominations are another example of the lack of diversity in Hollywood. Like the Rocky Mts. The higher you climb, the whiter.”
The president of the Academy Awards, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, is black. Recently she said, “The whole discussion about diversity is a great discussion, because now it’s at the top of everybody’s mind, not just the Academy’s.”