George Clooney thinks the Academy, which votes for Oscar nominees and winners, is “moving in the wrong direction.”
Clooney told Variety his thoughts on the Academy’s failure to nominate a single actor of colour for the second year in a row and said the Academy was doing a better job 10 years ago.
“Think about how many more African Americans were nominated,” he said. “I would also make the argument, I don’t think it’s a problem of who you’re picking as much as it is: How many options are available to minorities in film, particularly in quality films?”
He later added: “We should have been paying attention long before this. I think that African Americans have a real fair point that the industry isn’t representing them well enough. I think that’s absolutely true.”
He cited “Creed,” “Concussion,” “Beasts of No Nation,” and “Straight Outta Compton” as four films this year that were snubbed for major nominations. He also mentioned Ava DuVernay’s director snub for “Selma” at last year’s ceremony.
Both “Creed” and “Straight Outta Compton” only received one nomination each. Sylvestor Stallone received an acting nom for “Creed” and the “Compton” screenplay was nominated.
“There should be 20 or 30 or 40 films of the quality that people would consider for the Oscars,” he said. “By the way, we’re talking about African Americans. For Hispanics, it’s even worse. We need to get better at this. We used to be better at it.”
Clooney also pointed out that it’s harder for women over 40 to find lead roles in Hollywood, adding that most leads in the 1930s were for women.
He joins celebrities such as Spike Lee, David Oyelowo, and Jada Pinkett Smith, as well as Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs, who are speaking out about the lack of inclusion at this year’s Oscar ceremony.
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