Actress Jada Pinkett Smith and director Spike Lee have announced on social media that they will not be attending the 2016 Oscars, because of the lack of diversity in the nominations.
Last year the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) who organise the Oscars, was criticised for its failure to recognise the talent of non-white actors in the major categories for the award show.
It has happened again this year, leading to prominent figures in the black film industry to boycott the show.
The star of Magic Mike XXL and The Matrix Reloaded posted a video on her Facebook page asking “is it time that people of colour recognise how much power, influence we have amassed that we no longer need to ask to be invited anywhere”.
Spike Lee, director of Chi-raq, took to Instagram to say “How Is It Possible For The 2nd Consecutive Year All 20 Contenders Under The Actor Category Are White?…40 White Actors In 2 Years And No Flava At All. We Can’t Act?!”
In a statement the Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs, who is herself a black woman, has expressed her disappointment in the lack of diversity saying “I am both heartbroken and frustrated about the lack of inclusion”.
She said that the Academy will be reviewing its membership recruitment process to bring “much-needed” diversity to the awards.
TNT Entertainment Tiffany Cook