Critics say Oscars mocked Asians and left out Latinos, Native Americans

NEW YORK -- As Felix Sanchez watched the Academy Awards ceremony, he kept wondering when all the talk of diversity from host Chris Rock and others would itself become more diverse.

See Full Article

"I was shocked that Latinos and Asians and Native Americans were not a part of this conversation," says Sanchez, chairman and co-founder of the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, based in Washington, D.C.

"They have this idea that the paradigm is still black-white and they need to expand the conversation. That it was so narrow is indefensible."

The all-white list of acting nominees led to widespread criticism in the weeks leading up to Sunday night's show and to the hashtag movement OscarsSoWhite. Rock was praised for introducing an unusual level of candour about race to the telecast, but his comments were almost exclusively about blacks, and the show overall made only brief references to other minorities.

In one segment, three Asian children carrying briefcases walked out on stage and were introduced as PricewaterhouseCoopers accountants, an apparent reference to Asians being good at math.

"If anybody's upset about that joke, just tweet about it on your phone, which was also made by these kids," Rock said.

Mee Moua, president and executive director of the Washington-based Asian Americans Advancing Justice, said in a statement Monday that the show was a setback for diversity.

"Last night's ceremony, and particularly the 'joke' involving Asian children, which played off more than one damaging stereotype of Asians and Asian Americans, exposed one of the failings of how we talk about race in America: race relations are not a black-white binary," she said.

"It is to all of our detriment to look at race narrowly. We need to work together to dismantle the systems that devalue the experiences of minority groups so we can see the tales of the diversity that have shaped our nation reflected accurately.

A publicist for Rock, Leslie Sloane, said Monday that he was unavailable for comment. And the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Sanchez said that he watched closely to see if any attendees were wearing brown ribbons, which Eva Longoria and others had suggested as a protest against the absence of Hispanics.

"I didn't see one person wearing the brown ribbon," he said.

Some at the Oscars did make broader calls for diversity. "The Revenant" filmmaker Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, in his acceptance speech, urged "our generation to really liberate ourselves from all prejudice and ... make sure for once and forever that the colour of the skin becomes as irrelevant as the length of our hair."



Advertisements

Latest Entertainment News

  • 'Embracing our girl power:' Alamo cinema chain doubles down with more ladies-only Wonder Woman screenings

    Entertainment CBC News
    The Alamo Drafthouse movie chain said this week it's "embracing our girl power" with women-only screenings of Wonder Woman at least two theatres in the U.S., but the move has left some men angry at being left out. Source
  • Pirates of the Caribbean vs. Baywatch

    Entertainment CBC News
    There's a rumble at the multiplex this weekend as the latest Pirates of the Caribbean installment looks to take on Baywatch. At first glance the fifth Pirates film may seem to have the deck stacked in its favour, but don't count out what Dwayne Johnson describes as "The Avengers of the beach. Source
  • Brad Pitt, Pharrell among mourners at Chris Cornell memorial

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    LOS ANGELES — Brad Pitt and Pharrell joined mourners Friday at Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell’s memorial service at a storied Hollywood cemetery. Soundgarden music played from a portable speaker outside the cemetery’s gates as a group of about a dozen fans gathered outside. Source
  • Paris Jackson mistaken for homeless person on set of new movie

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Michael Jackson’s teenage daughter Paris was left stunned after she was mistaken for a homeless person on the set of her new movie. The young actress detailed the surprising mix-up in a pair of Twitter posts on Thursday after she arrived to start work on director Nash Edgerton’s as-yet-untitled film for Amazon Studios. Source
  • Ariana Grande planning benefit concert in Manchester

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — Ariana Grande has vowed to return to Manchester, England, to give a concert to raise money for the victims of Monday’s deadly bombing at her show there. In a statement both defiant and heavy with emotion, the pop star on Friday wrote to her fans, saying “we won’t let hate win” and “we won’t let this divide us. Source
  • Carly Rae Jepsen goes viral with new song 'Cut to the Feeling'

    Entertainment CTV News
    TORONTO - Carly Rae Jepsen is giving listeners all the right emotions, yet again. The Canadian pop singer, who rose to international fame with the megahit "Call Me Maybe," released the song "Cut to the Feeling" as a single on Friday to a rousing response. Source
  • Disney’s new Avatar land ‘a dream come true’ for James Cameron [Photos]

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    ORLANDO — Writer-director James Cameron changed the film game in 2009 when he released Avatar — a sci-fi adventure that was years ahead of its time in the use of camera technology and 3D. Now, teaming up with the Disney Imagineers at Animal Kingdom, Cameron is out to reinvent the theme park experience for fans of the movie with Pandora — The World of Avatar, which opens to the public May 27. Source
  • Ariana Grande says she will return to Manchester for benefit concert

    Entertainment CTV News
    NEW YORK -- Ariana Grande has vowed to return to Manchester, England, to give a concert to raise money for the victims of Monday's deadly bombing at her show there. In a statement both defiant and heavy with emotion, the pop star on Friday wrote to her fans, saying "we won't let hate win" and "we won't let this divide us. Source
  • Bella Thorne ditched by Scott Disick in Cannes [Video]

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Bella Thorne declared “Cannes isn’t for me” on Twitter on Thursday, just hours after her new fling Scott Disick was pictured reconnecting with his ex. The Duff actress had been pictured kissing and cuddling the Keeping Up with the Kardashians star in Cannes on Wednesday, with the pair doing little to conceal their affections for one another. Source
  • Ariana Grande plans to hold benefit concert in Manchester

    Entertainment CBC News
    American singer Ariana Grande says she will return to Manchester for a benefit concert to raise money for the victims of the attack on May 22. Grande expressed her interest in doing a benefit show in an Instagram post on Friday, with a date to be announced later. Source