Oscars introduce long overdue diversity initiative beginning in 2024

The Academy released a series of standards that all films nominated for Best Picture must meet in order to be eligible, and it’s about time.

Five years after April Reign created the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag, a call to action encouraging The Academy to include more diverse stories in their nominations, the Oscars are on track to become a little less white. Finally.

This new initiative is aimed to create a diverse and inclusive atmosphere in films, and also on film sets and in film studios. Even though 2019’s Academy Awards had a record-breaking night for women and Parasite took home the most wins at the 2020 Academy Awards, we all know that there’s more work to be done.

Starting in 2024, any nominee in the Best Picture category must meet two of the four new representation and inclusion standards to be deemed eligible — although we still feel like that’s not enough.

The four categories include:

  1. The film must feature groups, themes, and narratives that are underrepresented.
  2. The film must have a certain number of key crew numbers who belong to an underrepresented group.
  3. The film’s distributor must employ paid apprenticeships and internships who belong to an underrepresented group, as well as offer training for people in these groups
  4. The studio or film company must have multiple in-house senior executives from an underrepresented group.

Underrepresented groups, as defined by The Academy, include women, LGBTQ+, people with cognitive or physical disabilities, and those who are Asian, Hispanic/Latinx, Black/African American, Indigenous/Native American/Alaska Native, Middle Eastern/North African, Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, or any other underrepresented race or ethnicity.

This news comes as no surprise after racial inequality has become a major topic of conversation throughout our society. And it’s about time Hollywood started taking action to be more inclusive.

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While we wait for 2024 to see the outcome of these inclusive strategies, we hope that the movies and films over the next few years begin to represent the world that we see around us.