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Film Academy Makes Affirmative Actions Towards Diversity

The Academy adds more board members and officially apologizes for offensive Chris Rock skit
By The News · 15 of March 2016 21:57:27
John Krasinski, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, FILE - In this Jan. 14, 2016 file photo, John Krasinski, left, and Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs announce the Academy Awards nominations for best performance by an actor in a supporting role at the 88th Academy Awards nomination ceremony in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File), No available

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has added three new governors to its 51-member board and appointed six minority members to other leadership positions in its latest response to the #OscarsSoWhite diversity crisis. The academy also apologized to Asians for a racially insensitive skit during last month’s Oscar show.

Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs announced the new appointees late Tuesday after a meeting of the organization’s Board of Governors. The board also ratified other changes proposed in January aimed at increasing diversity within the academy’s ranks, including limiting Oscar voting rights to those active in the movie business.

Megalyn Echikunwoke, izquierda, y Chris Rock aparecen detrás del escenario de los Premios Oscar el domingo 28 de febrero de 2016, en el Teatro Dolby en Los Ángeles. La lista de nominados compuesta sólo de actores caucásicos llevó a críticas generalizadas en las semanas previas al programa del domingo por la noche y al movimiento del hashtag OscarsSoWhite. Rock fue elogiado por introducir un nivel inusual de sinceridad sobre el racismo a la transmisión, pero sus comentarios fueron casi exclusivamente sobre los negros, y el programa en general hizo referencias breves a otras minorías. (Foto Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)

Chris Rock lingers backstage with Megalyn Echikunwoke at this year’s Oscars. The Academy later apologized for his skit that was considered offensive to the Asian American community. Photo: Associated Press/Matt Sayles

Boone Isaacs said in a statement that she’s proud of those efforts. “However, we know there is more to do as we move forward to make this a more inclusive organization,” she said.

New committee members include actor Gael Garcia Bernal, cinematographer Amy Vincent and producer Effie Brown. The new governors are writer Gregory Nava (“Frida”), director Jennifer Yuh Nelson (“Kung-Fu Panda”) and Reginald Hudlin, who produced the most recent Academy Awards.

Hosted by Chris Rock, the show dipped to an eight-year ratings low and offended at least two dozen Asian academy members with skits that played on Asian stereotypes.

Earlier Tuesday, the academy released a statement saying it “regrets that any aspect of the Oscar telecast was offensive.”

SANDY COHEN