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  #41  
Old 23 February 2016, 05:02 AM
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damian damian is offline
 
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If the individual members are voting on a subjective basis, and the top 5 (?) nominees are chosen, how does that make the Academy racist?

I think the fix for any problem (real or perceived) is to stop giving so much attention to self-congratulatory award ceremonies for the entertainment industry.
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  #42  
Old 23 February 2016, 05:08 AM
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If the individual members are voting on a subjective basis, and the top 5 (?) nominees are chosen, how does that make the Academy racist?
No one said it does so your question is a non-sequitur. If you mean "how could it possibly be?" then the answer is "in many ways". Just as one example:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aversive_racism

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I think the fix for any problem (real or perceived) is to stop giving so much attention to self-congratulatory award ceremonies for the entertainment industry.
Sure, they could just stop doing any entertainment at all, which would "solve" the problem. (And, yet, when the same thing was suggested by many in the industry, including the one you complained about, it was criticized as a "boycott" even though it wasn't described as such.)
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  #43  
Old 23 February 2016, 05:33 AM
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The fact that even though they nominated movies like Straight Outta Compton which had a predominately black cast, yet said nominations were only for the white people involved with that movie, doesn't give you the slightest bit pause, Damian?

I mean, I see the Oscars as a big Hollywood circle-jerk that has little to do with what movies actually do stand the test of time and have an impact on our culture, but still. Nobody involved thought that someone might take this the wrong way?
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  #44  
Old 23 February 2016, 03:09 PM
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Seaboe Muffinchucker Seaboe Muffinchucker is offline
 
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I'm popping in here just to say that if you're interested in Black Film history, you need to know about this film: Lime Kiln Field Day. I saw it last night, in its last tour performance (it's coming out on DVD). It's a very important film, even though it was never finished by the original filmmakers.

Seaboe
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  #45  
Old 23 February 2016, 03:16 PM
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Darth Credence Darth Credence is offline
 
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Originally Posted by ganzfeld View Post
...One is Spike Lee's suggestion that they implement a rule similar to the Rooney Rule...
I like the Rooney rule for football, but I'm not really clear here what Mr. Lee is asking for. I was going to ask you, but decided to do a search for it and found a brief rundown. It seems like he is asking for something different from the Rooney rule.

While the Rooney rule requires teams to interview at least one minority candidate for head coaching jobs, it doesn't require hiring any minorities. Mr. Lee's rule request seems to be that studios are required to make a minimum number of films featuring minorities.

I think the problem with this is there is no body equivalent to the NFL for movie studios that can enforce this rule. For the NFL, each team is part of a larger system that can enforce a rule like this. If, say, Washington decided to not follow that rule, the NFL could take action, ultimately up to kicking them out of the league. That would effectively end the teams existence. If the AMPAS tried to institute this rule, and some random studio laughed and said no, I can't think of anything that could be done to force them to comply. Maybe ban every movie from the studio from the Oscars, but that in no way prevents the studio from making movies that were never going to get an Oscar anyway but will still make money.

I would guess that Mr. Lee would like to see the government step in and require it. While I like the goal, I don't think that requiring studios to make films featuring any group of people would have any prayer of passing, let alone being deemed constitutional. I don't know of another solution, though, other than trying to shame the studios into doing the right thing.
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  #46  
Old 23 February 2016, 05:25 PM
Dr. Dave Dr. Dave is offline
 
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Darth, I have not given this much thought but I think that the most effective and legal thing to do- assuming going forth with the proposal- would be to say that only studios who voluntarily agree to comply with the rule may be in the Academy/ be eligible for awards (whatever the terminology is) and that studios who agree but fail to comply lose eligibility for awards for that year.

Operationalizing it to make real change would be more difficult because a big studio could for example go on doing exactly what they are doing (ETA and teh Academy voters could continue as is as well) and then if it seems likely they won't meet the standard, produce a couple of low budget comedies with African American actors and release them in a few cities with large African American populations. To stick with the NFL analogy, sort of like when every team just interviewed Dennis Green and then went on as usual.

I also agree with you that this suggestion and the Rooney Rule are related only by the goal of inclusion and increased inclusion of African Americans. The Rooney Rule analogy to this proposal would be if every staff had to have at least one African American coach in one of four roles: Head Coach, Assistant Head Coach, OC or DC.
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  #47  
Old 23 February 2016, 10:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Credence View Post
I like the Rooney rule for football, but I'm not really clear here what Mr. Lee is asking for. I was going to ask you, but decided to do a search for it and found a brief rundown. It seems like he is asking for something different from the Rooney rule.
I don't know the details of his proprosal. As far as I know there are none. I think he was just saying do something proactive at the production level to ensure more films by and with and about minorities get made. His use fo the Rooney Rule as an example is interesting because that rule does not use any quota for hiring but (as far as I understand it in my limited knowledge) only requires changes in the hiring process that makes it less likely qualified minorities won't be overlooked.

I would not be opposed to a kind of quota in which the production companies make a goal of producing a number of minority movies (however that's defined) and movies every year. I can't see any reason why such a voluntary commitment would be a bad thing.

I was watching a famous CG animated movie made one or two years ago and the credits came on. Four or five pages went by before the first name that looked remotely female came on. I was like "holy carp! I'm certain there are women qualified to do severy one of those jobs..." I have said this before and I'll say it again, I'm in favor of affirmative action on these issues. It can be voluntary.
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I would guess that Mr. Lee would like to see the government step in and require it.
What? Where did you get that idea? I don't know how you would get it from his movies, for example. I think the whole point of talking about the Rooney rule is that it's voluntary. The whole industry doesn't have an NFL but each big production studio is like one.
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  #48  
Old 23 February 2016, 11:09 PM
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Originally Posted by ganzfeld View Post
I don't know the details of his proprosal. As far as I know there are none. I think he was just saying do something proactive at the production level to ensure more films by and with and about minorities get made. His use fo the Rooney Rule as an example is interesting because that rule does not use any quota for hiring but (as far as I understand it in my limited knowledge) only requires changes in the hiring process that makes it less likely qualified minorities won't be overlooked.

I would not be opposed to a kind of quota in which the production companies make a goal of producing a number of minority movies (however that's defined) and movies every year. I can't see any reason why such a voluntary commitment would be a bad thing.

I was watching a famous CG animated movie made one or two years ago and the credits came on. Four or five pages went by before the first name that looked remotely female came on. I was like "holy carp! I'm certain there are women qualified to do severy one of those jobs..." I have said this before and I'll say it again, I'm in favor of affirmative action on these issues. It can be voluntary.

What? Where did you get that idea? I don't know how you would get it from his movies, for example. I think the whole point of talking about the Rooney rule is that it's voluntary. The whole industry doesn't have an NFL but each big production studio is like one.
I watched the video where he made this proposal, and it is clear now that he only compared it to the Rooney rule because a former NFL player was there. It was pretty much an on the fly response to what Hollywood could do to make things better. After seeing that, I would pretty much throw out any connection to the Rooney rule. The similarities are that Mr. Lee would like to see more minority representation when movies are green lit, and he made an analogy to that being like the Rooney rule where minorities are part of the interview process.

I am also in favor of affirmative action in this. I don't disagree even a little tiny bit about doing whatever can be done to help make the movie industry much more diverse. I see no reason why a voluntary commitment would be a bad thing, either, although that is also a departure from the Rooney rule, which is absolutely not voluntary for the individual teams. Heck, if AMPAS had the juice to do to movie studios what the NFL can do to the individual teams, I would love for them to institute a rule like Dr. Dave brought up. But they don't.

Which brings me to the last point, about why I would think Mr. Lee would want the government to enforce this. I did not get that from his movies - the last movie of his I saw was Inside Man in 2006, and before that was He Got Game. I assumed that because I honestly have no idea how else you would make it work. There just isn't a body that could enforce such a rule, and without that, it isn't a rule. Again, the Rooney rule is not voluntary, it is imposed by a group that can enforce punishments for not following. If Mr. Lee would not want government enforcement, then I apologize for thinking he would.
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  #49  
Old 24 February 2016, 12:11 AM
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ganzfeld ganzfeld is offline
 
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Well, again, each studio is a body. I don't see why it has to be enforced industry-wide. The motion picture industry already follows many written and unwritten rules voluntarily, some of which have been the basis of huge changes in the industry over the years.

I don't really see the point of focusing on the details of the NFL's situation. The point is they decided to change themselves and they did. That's all. Production studios can do the same. "Always do the right thing."
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  #50  
Old 25 February 2016, 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by ganzfeld View Post
One important point here is that virtually no one has accused any individuals of being racist. I don't know how often it needs to be said but I will repeat it as often as these questions keep coming up: It is possible for institutions to be racist - even extremely racist - even when no individuals in the institutions are.
Can you explain how the Academy might be racist, even though the members may not be? The members are what makes up the Academy. It's not "The Academy" that does the nominating or voting, it's the individual members. There are no rules to limit how many actors may be nominated. As far as I can tell, it's usually the actors themselves (or their publicists) or the producers than nominate the people for the awards.
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  #51  
Old 25 February 2016, 11:39 AM
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Damian, did you read the link I posted? I thought that should answer at least one way. The members happen to be 94% white (also a result of a long history of racism). So they may have a cultural scotoma, the cumulative result of which is a racist outcome. I think there are several other ways, some of which can be inferred from the discussion on that link.

In any case, I don't say they aren't racist. I said I think it's possible they aren't. If they must be racist for the Academy to make such a racist outcome then so be it. I was only giving them the benefit of the doubt. The result is racist. Based on my own statistical analysis of this year alone (which I'm quite sure would be far compounded with other years included), it's 99.999+% certain that the outcome has far far underrepresented people of color. If you can tell me how that would happen other than by chance (which, again, is tens of thousands to one) or racism, please do.
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  #52  
Old 26 February 2016, 01:14 AM
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Thought a recent Cracked article might provide fodder for an interesting discussion. It does further prove what I've suspected that the Oscars are a big circle-jerk for Hollywood that has little to do with films that actually have an impact.

Though all that stuff about the writing for the Oscars, it does explain why the humor is so boring and safe, so safe that not even the edgiest comedian can do anything with the material.
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  #53  
Old 26 February 2016, 01:52 AM
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The fact that even though they nominated movies like Straight Outta Compton which had a predominately black cast, yet said nominations were only for the white people involved with that movie, doesn't give you the slightest bit pause, Damian?
Also Creed was written & directed by a black man, had a black man in the lead and several people of color in supporting roles and the only nomination was Sylvester Stallone.
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  #54  
Old 26 February 2016, 05:05 AM
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If you can tell me how that would happen other than by chance (which, again, is tens of thousands to one) or racism, please do.
I'll grant that there is probably an accumulative effect of an absence of non-whites gaining qualifications in the technical roles in the past.

Any "blame" for the lack of leading roles for non-white actors in Academy Award nominated films must lie between the studios and the movie-goers. The majority of lead roles for black actors in wide-release movies seem to be action or sports-themed movies which hardly ever are considered for Academy Awards. I'm having a hard time coming up with a black actor (ironically other than Will Smith) in a rom-com that was in wide-release. The studio wont give them the role, so we don't see the movie, so the studio won't give them the role in the next movie. It's a self confirmed bias. But it isn't the fault of the Academy or the voters. The whole damn system is out of order.
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  #55  
Old 26 February 2016, 06:08 AM
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I'll grant that there is probably an accumulative effect of an absence of non-whites gaining qualifications in the technical roles in the past.
No, that is still extremely unlikely unless that number is below 3% for this year alone and below 1% for multiple years. But it isn't. Even if it were, the low number of people in such roles is one of the very things people have been asking to change. But, again, even if that were the only problem, it's still extremely unlikely to be the reason for the < 150-to-one ratio.
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The majority of lead roles for black actors in wide-release movies seem to be action or sports-themed movies which hardly ever are considered for Academy Awards.
Then you haven't been paying attention to the examples mentioned in this very thread or, really, the motion picture industry in general. I don't know where you got that idea in the first place but it is not true.
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  #56  
Old 26 February 2016, 03:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by damian View Post
...I'm having a hard time coming up with a black actor (ironically other than Will Smith) in a rom-com that was in wide-release. The studio wont give them the role, so we don't see the movie, so the studio won't give them the role in the next movie. It's a self confirmed bias. But it isn't the fault of the Academy or the voters. The whole damn system is out of order.
Off the top of my head:
Eddie Murphy (and others) in Boomerang.
Michael B. Jordan in That Awkward Moment.
Michael Ealy and Kevin Hart (among several others) in both Think Like a Man and About Last Night.
Eddie Murphy in Coming to America
Whoever was opposite Vivica Fox in Two Can Play at That Game (OK, that's a bit of a cheat)

So there are certainly some, although no where close to an equivalent number. But what I really wanted to know here is, why is it ironic that you can come up with Will Smith?
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  #57  
Old 01 March 2016, 03:24 AM
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But what I really wanted to know here is, why is it ironic that you can come up with Will Smith?
Because his wife is one of the leading voices in the discussion.
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