It looks like the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is on the verge of diversifying their membership. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Oscar-permitting collective announced their invitation of membership which heights at 928 new prospect members which include Hip-Hop notables Chuck D, Questlove, and Kendrick Lamar.
This year’s roster of invitees is the higher than its 774 prospects of 2017. While attempting to appear politically correct under the banner of “people of color” which hoard a majority of Blacks but also include Latinos, the Academy has been on a mission ever since the 2014 outburst of #OscarsSoWhite to diversify their ranks by putting in place a concentrated effort. About 38 percent of the new invitees are Black and Latino including Tiffany Haddish, Dave Chappelle, Larenz Tate, George Lopez, Mekhi Phifer, Gina Rodriguez and several more. They even ventured an invitation of membership to Jada Pinkett-Smith, who along with Spike Lee enforced a boycott on the Academy for the 2016 Oscars.
“Begging for acknowledgment, or even asking, diminishes dignity and diminishes power. And we are a dignified people, and we are powerful,” Smith said during a Facebook video in 2016 highlighting the boycott. “So, let’s let the Academy do them, with all grace and love. And let’s do us, differently.”
Shall all Black and Latino invitees accept their invitation, the “people of color” percentage of voting members in the Academy will jump up to 16 percent. At the top of 2016, approximately 92 percent of the body’s voting members were white. The Academy’s president at the time, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, a Black woman pledged that the organization will place an effort to double its membership of diverse talents and women by 2020 and the nature of invitees in coming years will determine the achievement of the goal.
With the invitation of Hip-Hop legend Chuck D, The Roots’ production master Questlove, and modern-day sensation Kendrick Lamar, Hip-Hop continues to slide into the ranks of prestigious accolades and associations throwing severe respect on the name of the culture.