Academy makes major changes in response to #OscarsSoWhite controversy

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences is making some big changes, in the wake of this year’s Oscar nominations — none of which went to actors of color in the four major acting categories.

Among the moves the Academy announced Friday, it will add three seats to its 51-person board in an effort to double the number of minorities and women in the Academy by 2020, according to Variety.

It also met with host Chris Rock to make sure he’s still on board. Rock has been under pressure from some in the industry to back out of hosting.

Beginning later in 2016, new member’s voting rights will last 10 years and be renewed only if that member has been active in film. Members will get lifetime voting rights after three 10-year-terms, or if they’ve been nominated for an Oscar.

Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs said, “The Academy is going to lead and not wait for the industry to catch up. These new measures regarding governance and voting will have an immediate impact and begin the process of significantly changing our membership composition.”

The board made the changes in an emergency meeting Thursday night, presumably in response to the controversy over the Academy not including any actors of color in the four major acting categories for the second straight year. Spike Lee, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett have all said they will boycott this year’s ceremony.

The Academy will also launch a new campaign aimed at increasing diversity.

Variety points out that, of 305 eligible films this year, only a handful were made by minority directors, and fewer were directed by women.






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