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

  • Dolores O'Riordan found second home in Ontario, called herself 'half a Canuck'

    Entertainment CTV News
    Dolores O'Riordan, the defiant voice of Irish rock band the Cranberries who died Monday at 46, found a certain solace in her second home -- a remote town in Ontario. When she wasn't performing rock anthems like "Zombie," "Linger" and "Dreams" before audiences of thousands, O'Riordan was often at her cottage north of Peterborough, Ont. Source
  • Stratford Festival received $10 million gift for Tom Patterson Theatre

    Entertainment CBC News
    The Startford Festival announced it has received a $10 million dollar gift from long time supporter Ophelia Lazaridis as part of the theatre's new $100 million dollar campaign aimed to rebuild and secure the Tom Patterson Theatre. Source
  • UKIP leader breaks up with girlfriend over racist texts

    Entertainment CBC News
    The leader of the anti-EU U.K. Independence Party says he has broken up with his girlfriend after she made racist remarks about Prince Harry's fiancée, Meghan Markle. Henry Bolton said Monday that "the romantic side" of his relationship with 25-year-old Jo Marney was over. Source
  • UKIP leader breaks up with girlfriend over racist texts about Meghan Markle

    Entertainment CBC News
    The leader of the anti-EU U.K. Independence Party says he has broken up with his girlfriend after she made racist remarks about Prince Harry's fiancée, Meghan Markle. Henry Bolton said Monday that "the romantic side" of his relationship with 25-year-old Jo Marney was over. Source
  • Cranberries singer Dolores O'Riordan dead at 46

    Entertainment CTV News
    TORONTO -- Dolores O'Riordan, lead singer of the Cranberries who split her time between Ireland and a remote town in Ontario, has died at 46. Publicist Lindsey Holmes says O'Riordan died suddenly Monday in London, where she was recording. Source
  • 'We are crushed:' Fans, friends pay tribute to Cranberries singer Dolores O'Riordan

    Entertainment CBC News
    Dolores O'Riordan, lead singer of Irish band the Cranberries, has died at age 46. O'Riordan died in London, where she was recording, publicist Lindsey Holmes said. The cause of death wasn't immediately available. Holmes said the singer's family is devastated by the news. Source
  • 'I really struggled to finish:' Céline Dion apologizes to fans for cancelling 3rd Las Vegas concert this month

    Entertainment CBC News
    Céline Dion says she is "truly sorry" for cancelling another Las Vegas concert as she continues to battle throat inflammation. The Quebec singer posted on Facebook that after struggling to get through her show on Friday, her doctors told her she "absolutely" could not perform as scheduled the following night. Source
  • Celine Dion cancels third Las Vegas show as throat inflammation persists

    Entertainment CTV News
    LAS VEGAS -- Celine Dion says she is "truly sorry" for cancelling another Las Vegas concert as she continues to battle throat inflammation. The Quebec singer posted on Facebook that after struggling to get through her show on Friday, her doctors told her she "absolutely" could not perform as scheduled the following night. Source
  • Zeta-Jones says Michael Douglas is a 'Me Too' supporter

    Entertainment CTV News
    NEW YORK -- Catherine Zeta-Jones says her husband, Michael Douglas, is "110 per cent" in support of the movement against sexual harassment. Earlier this month, Douglas issued what he called a pre-emptive denial of allegations, yet to be published, that he harassed an employee in the 1980s and damaged her career. Source
  • French star Catherine Deneuve apologizes to sexual abuse victims

    Entertainment CBC News
    Film star Catherine Deneuve has apologized to victims of "odious" acts of sexual abuse, after she signed a much-criticized letter saying men are being unfairly accused of sexual misconduct. The letter, signed by 100 French women, says the wave of accusations against powerful men since the Harvey Weinstein scandal has gone too far. Source