Individuals involved with Black-led projects like Bridgerton, Girls Trip and Queen & Slim, decry requests to hold press conferences for the three major projects were denied by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which is the organization behind the Golden Globes.
Requests went out through the projects respective studios or streaming distributors to hold press conferences with the 87-member organization, but were met with lack of interest and other reasons for rejections.
Not one of the projects mentioned received nominations at this year’s Golden Globes.
Traditionally, press conferences with HFPA are viewed as vehicles to raising awareness of bodies of work within the industry. The press tours have been known to propel projects to the award stage. Lee Daniels’ Precious is one such example of this industry maneuver.
As a result of growing backlash, the HFPA pledged to admit at least 13 Black members to it’s organization.
“As a demonstration of our commitment, the board has unanimously approved a plan to increase membership to a minimum of 100 members this year, with a requirement that at least 13 percent of the membership be Black journalists,” the organization said in a statement. We are also continuing to work on the comprehensive initiatives announced last week. Our outside legal counsel has already begun to work on how to effectively implement transformational changes to our organization, including a comprehensive review of our governance and code of conduct.”
The issue of diversity in entertainment award show nominations is a tale as old as time.
In 2016, the same year Chris Rock hosted the ceremony, social media was dominated by the hashtag, “OscarsSoWhite.” That particular year marked the second in a row when all 20 Oscar nominations in the acting categories went to white performers.
Unlike 2016, the United States has undergone a massive focus on race since the murder of George Floyd and an insurrection on the United States Capitol Building. The response from law enforcement to both events presented the public, including entertainment kingmakers, with a comparative case that highlighted the racial inequalities ever present in American society.
Since then, many filmmakers and stars of the entertainment industry have begun to speak out and share their experiences with related injustices within their field.
Ava DuVernay, who directed the Netflix limited series, When They See Us, saw her work shut out of the Golden Globes nomination last year. The award winning director took a brief moment to address the snub in between promoting her series on OWN, Queen Sugar.
Both DuVernay and Shonda Rhimes have reacted to the original reporting by TheWrap on the Blackout occurring at HFPA.
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