Spike Lee, Winner of Lifetime Achievement Oscar This Year, Won’t Attend Ceremony in February Due to Lack of Black Nominees

©PHOTOPQR/NICE MATIN/Patrick CLEMENTE - CANNES LE 19/04/07 -  SPIKE LEE  Spike Lee in Cannes, France, 18 April, 2007
Spike Lee in Cannes, France, 18 April, 2007

Spike Lee has posted this to Instagram. He will not attend the Oscars in February despite receiving an honorary award this year. He posted under the #Oscarsowhite hashtag.

I don’t know why Spike has chosen to capitalize every single word in his statement. But, he has. Anyway, he says he’s “most appreciative” for his honorary Oscar but he and wife Tonya will not be attending this year’s ceremony because, basically, there are 20 white actors and four white directors, and so on.

I agree with Spike on some of this. “Straight Outta Compton” should have been a Best Picture nominee. F. Gary Gray did a magnificent job as its director. More could have been done to achieve having black actors nominated. And — this is from me– I’m personally tired of seeing movies in which all the actors are white when it doesn’t matter what color they are. Fine, wonderful black actors are being cut out of film opportunities. This has to stop, and it must be casting directors and producers who shoulder the responsibility.

Here is Spike’s message:

I Would Like To Thank President Cheryl Boone Isaacs And The Board Of Governors Of The Academy Of Motion Pictures Arts And Sciences For Awarding Me an Honorary Oscar This Past November. I Am Most Appreciative. However My Wife, Mrs. Tonya Lewis Lee And I Will Not Be Attending The Oscar Ceremony This Coming February. We Cannot Support It And Mean No Disrespect To My Friends, Host Chris Rock and Producer Reggie Hudlin, President Isaacs And The Academy. But, How Is It Possible For The 2nd Consecutive Year All 20 Contenders Under The Actor Category Are White? And Let’s Not Even Get Into The Other Branches. 40 White Actors In 2 Years And No Flava At All. We Can’t Act?! WTF!! It’s No Coincidence I’m Writing This As We Celebrate The 30th Anniversary Of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s Birthday. Dr. King Said “There Comes A Time When One Must Take A Position That Is Neither Safe, Nor Politic, Nor Popular But He Must Take It Because Conscience Tells Him It’s Right”. For Too Many Years When The Oscars Nominations Are Revealed, My Office Phone Rings Off The Hook With The Media Asking Me My Opinion About The Lack Of African-Americans And This Year Was No Different. For Once, (Maybe) I Would Like The Media To Ask All The White Nominees And Studio Heads How They Feel About Another All White Ballot. If Someone Has Addressed This And I Missed It Then I Stand Mistaken.

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SOURCE: Showbiz 411 – Roger Friedman

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