NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK (NAN) & REV. AL SHARPTON TO CONVENE HOLLYWOOD DIVERSITY SUMMIT WITH LEADING FILM STUDIOS IN AUGUST—
NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK (NAN) & REV. AL SHARPTON TO CONVENE HOLLYWOOD DIVERSITY SUMMIT WITH LEADING FILM STUDIOS IN AUGUST
Friday, July 1, 2016 (Los Angeles) –In response to national protests leading to a 2016 Oscar tune-out convened by groups like National Action Network (NAN), the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has diversified the overwhelmingly white and male institution and 683 industry professionals were invited to become members of the nearly 90-year-old organization. The Academy is promoting the new members as their largest and most diverse class ever, more than double the 322 members invited last year, according to the Los Angeles Times.
In the wake of the Academy’s announcement, Reverend K.W. Tulloss, President of the L.A. National Action Network said: “I think this is a good step in the right direction, however with the lack of opportunity for people of color in Hollywood we expect limited progress. Therefore, National Action Network is calling for a Diversity Summit with all Major Hollywood Studios in August.”
On February 28th, NAN conducted a national “TV Tune Out” of the Oscar Awards Ceremony with leading activists and clergy to effectively show that Americans are willing to turn off a tradition that does not represent the broad cultural and diverse contributions of African American entertainment.
At the time, the LA Chapter of NAN said that the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has made many promises to promote diversity in its film awards. It kept none of them. The proof is that despite a number of highly qualified Black performers in major films, not one was nominated for an Academy award.
Next steps to be conducted by NAN in advance of the Summit will include a Hollywood listening tour during the month of July. This tour is designed to hear and organize the voices of those who have been systematically locked out of opportunities in Hollywood. NAN’s Summit with Studios and networks to highlight and strategize around diversity in Hollywood. We recognize that studios and Networks will call for the Academy to not only commit to hiring people of color but giving them the power to hire and greenlight film projects to ensure that the academy is successful.