Just days after her husband Will Smith was snubbed in the Oscar nominations, Jada Pinkett Smith went online today to suggest snubbing the Academy Awards themselves for failing to recognize the “artistic accomplishments” of people of color. Her tweets Saturday morning also come two days before America officially celebrates the birthday of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
When the nominations were announced snubbing Will Smith (“Concussion”), Idris Elba “Beasts of No Nation”), and Samuel L. Jackson (“The Hateful Eight”), there was an immediate backlash on Twitter. Jada further said to a reporter:
She thinks that if people do not speak out things will never change,” reports Rob Shuter of naughtygossip.com. “Most of the folks that vote are old white men. This has to change. She doesn’t care if speaking out hurts her career, she cannot sit silent anymore."
With AMPAS President Cheryl Boone Isaacs and host Chris Rock both having chimed in, the Magic Mike XXL actress is far from the first person to lament the bleached out nominations this year. But her proximity to the overlooked Concussion actor adds further muscle to her words on another year of #OscarsSoWhite.
In addition to Smith’s acclaimed performance in Peter Landesman’s film about brain damage and the NFL, Oscar also overlooked the successful F. Gary Gray helmed Straight Outta Compton and Samuel L. Jackson’s performance in The Hateful Eight when noms were announced January 14. While Sylvester Stallone was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his Rocky role in Creed, director Ryan Coogler and star Michael B. Jordan were also shut out of this year’s race. Idris Elba’s performance in Cary Joji Fukunaga’s Beasts of No Nation from Netflix wasn’t nominated either.