The Hollywood branch of the NAACP has opted to work with the film industry leaders behind the Oscars rather than boycott the awards.
Ron Hasson, president of the group’s Hollywood/Beverly Hills branch, told Deadline that NAACP leaders had met with officials at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to discuss ways to diversify the film industry. The NAACP may consider a boycott in the future if the Academy fails to offer concrete diversity proposals, he said.
“The solution lies in sitting down and meeting with the responsible people to bring about changes that we feel are necessary,” he told Deadline. “If we do not reach any kind of agreement, we will have to elevate it to the next step.”
This year’s Oscars—like others before—have attracted attention for a lack of diversity among nominees. Not a single non-white actor was nominated for an award. Following the outcry, the Academy promised to double the number of women and “diverse members” by 2020.
Early this week, a report from the University of Southern California highlighted a broader lack of diversity at the upper echelons of the entertainment industry. Only 28% of speaking rules featured non-white actors in major television shows and movies during 2014 and 2015, according to the report.
While the Hollywood branch of the NAACP will not be sanctioning the Oscars, other civil rights groups will. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network has called for a boycott.