New presenters are aimed at redressing the Hollywood diversity debate
Organisers of The Oscars have announced a diverse group of presenters to host awards at this year’s event, including super producer Quincy Jones.
The Academy has come under fire from a host of actors, directors and commentators, suggesting that the nominees for this year’s awards do not reflect the diverse market in which modern motion pictures are made.
Comedian Chris Rock will host the ceremony with Quincy Jones, Indian born actor Priyanka Chopra and South Korean actor Byung-hun Lee confirmed to hand out individual prizes on the night.
Music producer Jones served as the musical director for the ceremony in 1971 but will only present the awards if he is allowed to make a speech on the diversity row, according to The Guardian.
“They called me to go present with Pharrell and Common. “When I’m back [in Los Angeles], I’m going to ask [them] to let me speak for five minutes on the lack of diversity. If not, I’m not going to [present].”
Director Spike Lee, Jada Pinkett Smith, Tyrese Gibson and Will Smith are among those to have called for a boycott or stated that they will not be in attendance.
Last Friday (January 29), Smith explained his decision to boycott next month’s Academy Awards, saying that he wants to be “part of the solution” to the film industry’s diversity problem.
The 88th Academy Awards ceremony will be held on February 28 at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.