The movie industry’s most anticipated night of the year was just as glitzy and glamorous as expected with Hollywood’s biggest stars gracing the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. Last night, Leo finally got his beloved Oscar, the Girl Scouts sold over $65,000 worth of their signature cookies, and second-time host Chris Rock (unsurprisingly) roasted Hollywood. Hard.
Both the Academy and Rock faced backlash due to the complete lack of minorities nominated for acting in the past two years, to the point the latter had “thought about quitting.” Instead, Rock used his opening monologue to address the elephant in the room, calling the Oscars the “White People’s Choice Award.” He also said he decided to host because he knew the Oscars would be held anyway, and “the last thing I need is lose another job to Kevin Hart.”
“Is Hollywood racist? You’re damn right Hollywood is racist,” he said. He described the racism in Hollywood as not the “burning cross” kind. “Hollywood,” he said, “is sorority racist. ‘We like you Rhonda, but you’re not a Kappa.’” He also noted that black actors need to see more opportunities for movie roles. “We want opportunity,” Rock said. “We want the black actors to get the same opportunities as white actors. That’s it. And, not just once. Leo [DiCaprio] gets a great role every year!”
All funny jokes aside, Rock may have addressed Hollywood’s diversity issue head-on, but it was clearly not the most effective and ultimately done in poor taste. On a night all about not recognizing minorities, Asians were once again relegated to the butt of the joke. So what was the point? If the Oscars were all about diversity, why include the crude Asian joke? What about Latinos and other minorities? Last night was simply a three-and-a-half-hour long affair reminding Hollywood that it has a serious diversity problem.
TBD on what’s going to be done about it.