The Academy Invites 774 New Members, Gets Less White and Less Male

Image via Getty.
Image via Getty.

The Academy has announced that they’ve invited a whopping 774 new members this year, which is a record-breaking number for the institution.


According to a report from Variety, these new members offer a little bit more diversity when it comes to the Oscars voting process, which has historically been very white and male. The new class, which includes actors like Moonlight’s Naomie Harris, Donald Glover, and Leslie Jones among many others, is now 30 percent people of color. According to the Academy there has been a 331 percent increase of people of color joining from 2015-2017, so maybe #OscarsSoWhite really did work? At least a little?

The new class is also 39 percent female, which is a jump from the influx being just 27 percent women last year. Still, when you look at the big picture overall, only 28 percent of the Academy is female and 13 percent is POC, so there’s still a long way to go. There are, however, no numbers in the report reflecting how many new members won’t fuck up the winning card pass-off at the Oscars. I would have liked to have seen those!

Pop Culture Reporter, Jezebel

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You’re conflating percentage of the overall numbers with percentage of the year class, and it’s confusing. Of course, the Academy promotion is misleading on purpose.

They added less of both than last year. They tried to hide it by comparing to 2015 instead of 2016, but the class of 2016 was 46% women and 41% persons of color, with 683 total invitees. The class of 2017 is 39% women and 30% persons of color. They invited more people total in 2017, but it still works out to less people falling in either class this year than last. Women made up 27% of the Academy in 2016 (now up to 27%), and POC made up 11% (now up to 13%).

These classes are comparatively large to previous years, too—they’re watering down their ‘accomplishments’ even as they make them. This is only the most marginal of improvements.