In the aftermath of an outcry that the 88th Academy Award nominations are shockingly lacking in diversity — with all 20 acting nominations going to white actors and movies like “Straight Outta Compton” and “Creed” not making the cut for the Best Picture category — director and actor Tyler Perry has a solution.
Speaking to Zap2it and a group of media outlets at the 2016 TCA winter press tour panel for FOX’s “The Passion Live” Friday (Jan. 15), Perry’s request is an easy one.
“I think that the way the Academy can stop this is very simple. Rather than saying who votes — I don’t want to know who voted and how they voted — I’d just like to see the numbers,” he says.
As it stands, all information surrounding the voting for Academy Award nominations is kept completely confidential. That secrecy leaves many wondering what, exactly, it will take to get a more diverse group of Oscar contenders.
“I think if we saw the numbers of how many people voted for what movie, I think a lot of this would go away,” Perry continues. “If ‘The Revenant’ has 10,000 votes and ‘Straight Outta Compton’ had 9,999 votes, that one vote made the difference. That’s what my interest would be, what are the votes.”
Still, he doesn’t believe race is the issue at hand. “I don’t think it’s racism, I don’t think it’s madness,” Perry explains. “What are the votes and how does that go? Even in the presidential election we know who voted and how they voted.”
While Perry might see as the issue as something other than racism, that didn’t stop the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite from trending after the nominations were announced. The online movement started a year ago after the 2015 nominations were found to be decidedly non-diverse.
The 88th Academy Awards are Sunday, Feb. 28, on ABC.