On the 28th February the 88th annual Oscars ceremony took place in the Dolby theatre in Hollywood. This is a wonderful occasion in which the best films and performances of 2015 are celebrated. Many awards were distributed including Best Actor going Leonardo DiCaprio (finally!). However, it was greatly criticised for the nominations’ lack of diversity. The last black actress to win an award was nearly 15 years ago. This controversy even spread to other awards ceremonies like the BAFTAs and the BRITs.
Jada Pinkett Smith was the first to comment on boycotting the Oscars saying that people of colour are always welcomed to give out awards or perform but are rarely presented with awards themselves. She also posted a video on Facebook with her talking about her opinion on the situation’s development.
The host of the night, Chris Rock (a black actor and comedian) acknowledged the criticism but tried to remain uninvolved. Idris Elba however, felt very strongly about the allegations and even spoke to Parliament about the struggles that celebrities of colour have to withstand.
The president of the academy, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, told the press that she is taking large steps to alter the academy’s membership in order to improve the diversity in the award winners and those involved. Let’s hope that next year the Oscars go to plan with many ethnic minority winners!