View Full Version : 'Django Unchained' Producer on 'Selma' Oscar Snubs: Did Voters Have "Racial Fatigue"?

01-21-2015, 07:04 PM
I hate whining. Ironically, when I was asked to write about the Oscar "whiteout," I was in a planning meeting for the NAACP Image Awards. For those who don't know, the NAACP created the Image Awards almost 50 years ago in response to the lack of recognition of black talent in front of and behind the camera in mainstream (white) awards shows. You'd think this show wouldn't be needed by now, but that's clearly not the case.
Was there Oscar-worthy work in Selma that was overlooked? Absolutely! Why did it happen? One obvious problem is that not enough screeners were sent to the voters. And regardless of race, every Oscar year is full of heartbreaking overlooks of worthy performances and filmmaking. The unknowable question is whether the same voters who supported 12 Years a Slave had racial fatigue after supporting a black film last year. But in a year with a cascading series of racial controversies in Hollywood, the lack of black nominees highlights a bigger problem.

Articles decrying the lack of black presence in the Oscars is an annual event. Every once in a while there will be a miracle like 12 Years a Slave winning big, or Denzel Washington, Halle Berry and Sidney Poitier all winning Oscars. Those exceptional anecdotes don't make up for the tiny percentages of black and brown people working in entertainment.
Why is our business so behind the rest of the country? It's easier for a black person to become president of the United States than it is to be president of a movie studio. In the ruthless world of the Fortune 500, there are now black chairmen or CEOs at American Express, Microsoft, McDonald's, Merck and Xerox. When it comes to executive vps, managing directors and other feeder positions for future CEOs, the entertainment business can't compare to the banking world, which is perceived to be a far more conservative environment.
Given the shrinking white population in this country, the lack of people of color in the suites and on the screens is just bad business.
In the 1950s, Hollywood was reluctant to make movies with black stars because Southern distributors wouldn't support them. Now the South is one of the biggest markets for black entertainment product. But the problem still isn't solved because in the 21st century, Hollywood is reluctant to make movies with black stars because the international market won't support them.

We are sick and tired of having our noses rubbed in something we did not do and didn't have anything to do with so fuck the race baiters, I dare not say more.

01-21-2015, 08:21 PM
in the 21st century, Hollywood is reluctant to make movies with black stars because the international market won't support them.

Wow! Perhaps we should send #blacklivesmatter to japan and china and see if they can force people to watch Selma over there.

01-21-2015, 08:54 PM
This is one critics opinion. I recently heard a black movie critic say the movie was mediocre, and that there were other films more worthy that didn't get even a mention.

01-22-2015, 12:11 AM
This is one critics opinion. I recently heard a black movie critic say the movie was mediocre, and that there were other films more worthy that didn't get even a mention.

The President of the academy, who is black, said the same thing.

01-22-2015, 02:05 AM
However, it will get more Oscars than American Sniper.

01-22-2015, 09:35 AM
If the quote was representative of the whole article, I'm not sure that it's whiny-victimmy so much as an insider criticizing his own industry. Movies and TV shows that are mostly black or mixed white-black are not very common, and the small number that are make the imbalance noticeable. Whether Hollyweird movie and TV companies believe America isn't "ready" for that yet - despite the solid or wild success of many of the exceptions - or Hollyweirders are clueless or there's something more serious, I can't guess. Probably D. All of the above and more besides. The imbalance is real, and if it's a problem, it's Hollyweird's own problem. It's a context that colors every Hollyweirder's social preachments with rank hypocrisy. Hollyweirders, individually and as an industry will have to diagnose and correct their problem - extent and causes. I don't live there, geographically or career field or mentality.

By way of parallel contrast (I know, oxymoronic, like "jumbo shrimp"), my career field, hardware electronics, in Silicon Valley at least, has very few black technicians and engineers, and very few women in those positions as well (and the few women engineers I've known in the past >35 years were not born in the US). It's not due to discrimination, nor is it a "hostile work environment". Silicon Valley needs and welcomes people with the knowledge, creativity, and abilities to get things done! And, the rarity of blacks in technical positions aside, the numerous east and south Asians in those positions makes Silicon Valley a racist's nightmare. The imbalance is just people's - blacks and women - choices. I do not think Hollyweird's imbalances are due to blacks' choices, for the most part.

I'm not disagreeing with His Porcinity about being tired of the current constant drumbeat proclaiming racism and invoking slavery. I'm almost an old guy, but slavery in the US ended nearly 90 years before I was born. 3/4 of my immediate ancestors came to the US after slavery ended; the other 1/4 grew up in OH. My boyhood hometown's schools were "integrated" a hundred years ago, to my knowledge, and may always have been. I didn't do slavery, nor did my ancestors going back to (and probably beyond) Roman times. So when I hear screeches and shouts of "Racism!" I'm reflexively skeptical. False and mistaken claims of racism have had the same effect in me as the pranks of the proverbial boy who cried, "Wolf!" And condemnations of black wolf-criers by blacks have been very few! I don't dismiss claims of racism out of hand; it does happen, but it is not pervasive. If it's something that gets my attention I consider the evidence (and am very mindful that early MSM reports are extremely error-prone, incomplete, and often one-sided).

01-22-2015, 11:43 AM
One of the highest rated shows on TV, Scandal, has a black woman as it's lead.

There's nary a TV show on the major networks that don't have a black character. However, you'd be hard pressed to find a major white character on a black TV show.

At last year's Oscars, 12 Years A Slave won Oscars for best picture, supporting actress, and screenplay.

Just a few examples.