The NAACP commends the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, its President Hawk Koch and CEO Dawn Hudson today for its recent announcement expanding membership invitations to 276 new members, representing an historical level of racial and ethnic diversity.
“We are encouraged by the steps taken by The Academy, as well as the recent hiring of former NAACP Hollywood Bureau Executive Director Vicangelo Bulluck,” said Benjamin Todd Jealous, President and CEO, of the NAACP. “This is a great move toward greater representation and inclusion in Hollywood.”
According to a February 2012 Los Angels Times study, AMPAS members were nearly 94% Caucasian, and 77% male, with only 2% African American and 2% Latino membership.
Among the new members are Ava DuVernay, Orlando Bagwell, Steve McQueen, Lorrie Bartlett, and Tina Gordon Chism. As well as many NAACP Image Awards winners and nominees, including Kimberly Eilse, Paula Patton, Rosario Dawson, Chris Tucker and Sandra Oh, Michael Pena, Lucy Lui, Tim Story, Reggie Rock Bythewood, and Benh Zeitlin.
“We congratulate the new members and know they will serve as an inspiration to future generations of filmmakers and artists as proof that we do have a voice in the industry,” said Robin Harrison of the NAACP Hollywood Bureau. “We believe that these members will improve the range of honorees at The Academy’s upcoming awards show. Ultimately, we want this progress to be the shot heard around the industry.”