W Magazine accidentally highlighted Hollywood’s diversity problems, right?

alicia w

W Magazine has an annual feature to coincide with the big Oscar awards season. Many magazines do – like, Vanity Fair does their annual Hollywood Issue for the March issue, and they spend a lot of time and money on the editorials. W Magazine has tried to take the VF model and change it up a little bit, to mixed results. W’s annual special is called the Great Performances Issue, and they do multiple covers featuring some of the most Oscar-baity or buzzed-about actors of the year.

This year’s covers include: Alicia Vikander, Eddie Redmayne, Brie Larson, Saoirse Ronan, Rooney Mara and Carey Mulligan. What do all of their cover subjects have in common? They’re all white and under the age of 34. Which brings me to another feature of this year’s Oscar hustle: will this be a redux of #OscarsSoWhite? The thing is, most people feel like Idris Elba, Will Smith, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael B. Jordan, Oscar Isaac, and the Straight Out of Compton guys all had a pretty great year too, so why no W Magazine cover for any of them?

W also did photoshoots with a group that included Jennifer Jason Leigh, Benicio del Toro, Bryan Cranston, Amy Schumer, Sam Jackson, Joel Edgerton, Domhnall Gleeson and more – you can see the full slideshow here. W also did short videos with almost everyone featured in the issue – you can see the YouTube videos here. I spent too much time watching those. Everyone got a variation on the same question: what was the first film sex scene you remember, or what is your favorite movie sex scene, stuff like that. Alicia Vikander somehow got to avoid those questions and she talked about her favorite “romantic” scene, I guess. She named the part in Blue Valentine where Ryan Gosling plays the ukulele.

eddie w

rooney w

saoirse w

Photos courtesy of W Magazine.

Related stories

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

145 Responses to “W Magazine accidentally highlighted Hollywood’s diversity problems, right?”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Alex says:

    Is it really a breakthrough year for Rooney Mara who has been dragging her sourpuss face through movies for years? Ugh.

    • SOCHAN says:

      @ Alex
      LOL, best comment right at #1 where it belongs!

    • M.A.F. says:

      I would say the year she did Girl w/the Dragon Tattoo would have been her “breakthrough” year.

      • SOCHAN says:

        Even though that movie was universally hated. Rooney and her sister are just more examples of Hollywood nepotism, or having a career bought, paid-for, and handed to them without them ever having to struggle.

      • Down and Out says:

        “Universally hated”? Um, no it’s not. It got 86% on Rotten Tomatoes. I personally liked the original better, but the Fincher version isn’t bad.

      • Josefina says:

        @SOCHAN

        GWTDT was a commercial and critical success. The Swedish version is prefered by pretty much everyone, though.

      • lila fowler says:

        @Josefina Not so much a commercial success. It lost money in the end and the studio didn’t bother with the sequels.

      • Dee Kay says:

        I admit that I didn’t watch the Fincher version of Girl with the Dragon Tattoo b/c the original Swedish version is basically perfect. But Rooney Mara did a killer job in Carol, with Cate Blanchett.

      • jammypants says:

        @Sochan, While I agree she is privileged, what does that have to do with her talent? I don’t think a person’s upbringing should count against their credibility as actors, especially if they actually have something to show for it. I think she is quite a good actor and can carry her own.

    • Kitten says:

      LMAO!

    • Original T.C. says:

      I can talk myself into the Rooney Mara one because this is a breakthrough from her roles where she is playing in a big film but and is up for an Oscar without Sony Co greasing the wheels for her.

      The one I question is Carey Mulligan, what exactly did she do this year and what awards is she up for?

      • Kitten says:

        Suffragette…which…I love Carey but did that movie even get great reviews?

      • Original T.C. says:

        Rotten Tomatoes has Suffragettes at 73% which isn’t all that great and neither the film nor Mulligan has gotten any major critics awards. Not a fan of Kristen Stewart but she would make more sense than Carey Mulligan and this is from someone who considers Mulligan a superior actress but undeserving of the cover.

      • lila fowler says:

        But Harvey Weinstein is instead greasing the wheels for Rooney this time. Um, I think I’d prefer Sony?

    • TreadStyle says:

      +1 on that Alex!!!

    • PennyLane says:

      They should have a special issue devoted to nepotism and its many privileges.

      She can be on the cover of that one.

    • Kasia says:

      Why is Rooney Mara even a thing? I can’t understand her whole career. I know I’m being mean – but I’ve never enjoyed her films. She’s always stone cold and withdrawn. Just not my type of actor.

  2. Shambles says:

    Every single one of those cover shots gives me the creeps, and they made Alicia look like she has a lazy eye.

    And yes, this is tone-deaf at the very best. When will you learn?!?!? Ugh.

    • SOCHAN says:

      @Shambles

      It’s not that they aren’t learning. It’s that they just don’t care. Really. They want to sell magazines, lots of magazines, and their unrepentant insistence on filling their pages and covers with White (mostly young) celebrities and models is a message that these magazines don’t believe Blacks and Latinos sell, and presumably not Asians, either. They know this makes people angry, but they just don’t care because SELL.

      • Shambles says:

        You’re completely right, SoChan, it’s just utter defiance at this point. Willful ignorance is a crime against the human soul.

        You make an amazing point about these magazines not thinking that POC will sell, and that makes me profoundly sad and a little sick. Though I have been feeling ill since the Donald Trump thread.

      • SOCHAN says:

        But they’re NOT ignorant. They know EXACTLY what they’re doing. The word ignorance means “lack of knowledge”. They’re not “willfully ignorant”. They’re “willfully defiant”. That is WORSE than ignorance.

      • NN says:

        Only problem with that is…they DO sell.
        They actually do sell. So they are wrong.

      • The Eternal Side-Eye says:

        @NN

        That is the irony. Same with how many times the idea of a POC backed show was dismissed and pushed aside because, obviously, the ratings wouldn’t be good. Now many of the highest watched shows are with a strng POC base.

        It is ignorance in a sense. An ignorance where you believe anything other than white is ‘lesser’ and as a result their magazine will somehow lose some prestige or not be putting the real ‘stars’ on the covers. If you can rationalize someone as being second or third tier (even without evidence) it makes it easier to exclude them.

      • Kiki says:

        This is why, people should not buy these magazines and boycott the publication. I know only in a pipe dream.

        Therefore, I refuse to watch any award show seasons, that includes red carpet shows. Well maybe the Grammys.

      • Bridget says:

        @NN – but do they really? Does a Rooney Mara really sell that many magazines?

      • knower says:

        @SOCHAN
        +10000
        Seriously, thank you for writing that comment.

    • Alex says:

      Between this and the Hollywood Reporter …yes I will say this is another #OscarsSoWhite year. Disappointing

    • alice says:

      She does have a lazy eye and also she’s slightly strabismic. Google the pictures of an interview she did with MTV’s Josh Horowitz it’s clear when she looks up.

      https://scontent.cdninstagram.com/hphotos-xaf1/t51.2885-15/s320x320/e35/11820714_427374200802794_438710747_n.jpg

    • QQ says:

      this. Entire. f*cking. Thread…. I wish I had a Gif. Tossing my desk over but ya’ll got it handled, *praise hands for each and every one of you here

  3. Tig says:

    Finally saw The Danish Girl- thought Alicia was so compelling in that movie. I am in the process now of checking out bios of the character she played.

    And, agreed, why not highlight the actors/actresses in the movies mentioned in the article? The Oscars need to wake up, or they are going the way of Miss America-a cultural relic of a by-gone era. Still would watch for the fashion-I am shallow that way😏. Looking forward to GG for same reason!

  4. Div says:

    I’m honestly kind of shocked, although I shouldn’t be, that they left out Michael B. Jordan. It does go to show you how kind of ridiculous the Oscars have become when he’s given two awards worthy performances over the past few years and hasn’t been able to snag a big nomination while actors who have received praise that was a lot more tempered in films that weren’t as highly rated went on to secure nominations. At least a few of the prominent Critics group have thrown him some love. Samuel L. Jackson is another POC who has missed out a lot and I can’t help but think their race does play a huge part in why the old, white Academy keeps snubbing them. Of course Samuel doesn’t hardcore campaign either, which is definitely another factor that has prevented white guys like Gary Oldman from getting more noms in the past. I honestly don’t mean this as a diss at JLaw, who I like and think is talented, but it astounds me that she’s likely to get her fourth Oscar nomination at the ripe old age of 25 while Samuel L. Jackson has been nominated just once and Gary Oldman has been nominated just once.

    Anyway, this W magazine spread is just as clueless as the super white THR roundtables.

    • Lucy2 says:

      I agreen about MBJ- if their criteria was actors under 35 who had a big role this year, he certainly fits.

      • Don't kill me I'm French says:

        Does he campaign ? Does the studio campaign for the movie? Creed will release in France next year and all I know is “Stallone”and “new Rocky movie”

        All the persons who do this W cover campaign since some months

      • Div says:

        It’s mostly down to the studio, although some actors seem to do the maximum or even more than what the studio asks of them like Eddie Redmayne, Leo, or Anne Hathaway. There are exceptions like Jennifer Aniston who pretty much independently campaigned for herself or Melissa Leo for The Fighter. He’s campaigned a little but the studio isn’t doing that much for him (compared to what A24 is doing for Brie Larson or Focus for Eddie and Alicia) which is crazy because the film is in the 90s on RT, had some of the top critics in love with his performance and Stallone’s, etc.

    • M.A.F. says:

      The only performance I feel JLaw is worthy of her nomination was her first for Winter’s Bone. Everything after that, I’ve had problems because of her age. Yell at me all you want but in at least two of her roles (and maybe with 3 due to Joy) she has been too young to play and I just didn’t buy in.

      • Happy21 says:

        I agree with you. I love JLaw but Winter’s Bone really deserved the nomination, Silver Linings Playbook she shouldn’t have been nominated let alone win! I saw Joy the other day and her acting was WAY better than SLP so if anyone else actually sees that and thinks that she’ll win. (Not because I think she should) and while Joy surprised me and wasn’t as boring as I figured it would be, she was WAY too young to play the lead character. I couldn’t buy her having kids the ages they were at all. And I gather she didn’t marry at 16 so nope not buying it.

    • CornyBlue says:

      Every day a list comes out.. i open the THR roundtables and laugh. Like Carey Mulligan ?? JLaw even before someone saw the film ?? And then they write an article about it as if it absolves all their blame. If the media went behind say Mya Taylor she could have atleast been nominated for Tangerine. Tessa Thompson for Creed.

    • alice says:

      Absolutely. MBJ not only did an excellent job in Creed, and has the potential of becoming a really interesting and adult CGI-less franchise, but he’s absolutely one of the next leading men in young Hollywood. People should be outraged why he’s not getting the attention he deserves, because it’s clearly a case of racism, there’s no other way to explain it. I’m sure campaigning wouldn’t have been a problem for him, it’s just that Hollywood decided to give that spot to someone else. A white someone.

  5. Petitehirondelle says:

    Personaly, Oscars ceremony was important for me when i was younger. But now, they give me the vibe to Be a small club that snub people like “you can not understand the art, we choose the best following our points”. And each year,it is about campaign and relationships. Around me, people care less and less…. I don’t go to watch a film because of Oscars

    • Div says:

      ITA. Trumbo getting a lot of accolades is kind of the definition of the weird insularity of the GG, SAG, and Oscars. It’s a decent film, rated in the 70s on RT, but nearly all the top critics were basically like “it’s good but not great and plays it safe.” However, the awards bodies are falling all over it because it’s a safe, non innovative film that glorifies Hollywood with well liked older white actors. Meanwhile, Creed which is in the 90s, had some rapturous reviews, and a diverse cast has basically been snubbed by most. Fruitvale Station is another great film with Michael B. Jordan that got snubbed.

      • Petitehirondelle says:

        I don’t even try to understand anymore their choices but more and more people think like that around me

      • Don't kill me I'm French says:

        Trumbo was out of radar until SAG award nominations.
        For some unknown reasons( late contender?),The Big Short who is nominated in major awards( acting,writing,editing…)is not a favorite

      • M.A.F. says:

        Trumbo has the history & nostalgia factor going for it. I’m sure there are still those in Hollywood & on the Academy board who were part of the communist witch hunt in 1950′s Hollywood.

      • Josefina says:

        I felt that was perfectly illustrated last year with The Imitation Game and Selma. For me, both films were the same. Formulaic, safe, and completely unoriginal, with the saving grace being the great performances. One film got 8 noms, the other got 2. Guess which one was about white people.

  6. Renee28 says:

    Tessa Thompson is another one who deserves a cover. She’s young, pretty and had a breakthrough year. Hollywood likes to pretend there are no options even when there are plenty.

    • SOCHAN says:

      “Hollywood likes to pretend there are no options even when there are plenty.”

      @ Renee28

      EXACTLY. Hollywood loves to recycle and trot out the same old faces. The Black and other non-White celebs they have accepted into their circle are the ones whom Hollywood has been forced to accept that the public loves. Sam Jackson? Do you think magazines would ever give this man a cover if they didn’t know beyond a shadow of a doubt that he has earned a huge following among all races? Will Smith, too. And Oprah. Here’s the problem I have: White celebrities can get on a cover FOR DOING NOTHING SPECIAL. But a Black celebrity have to EARN/PROVE their universal likability before they can get a cover.

      • CK says:

        Right? This cover debacle made me realize why I was so apprehensive to the cult of Vikander and the cult of Woodley before her 2 years ago. They were getting their asses kissed with fawning praise and magazine covers BEFORE anyone knew their name or saw their movies while actresses/actors of color that have consistently put in phenomenal work like Tessa Thompson and Gugu Mbatha-Raw, are just let on the wayside in what many would call their breakout years.

      • CK says:

        She does now. She didn’t deserve half the hype she got before anyone saw her films. Don’t get me wrong, Vikander had a fantastic year, but she was predestined since last year before any of her films had premiered.

      • Lambda says:

        Apropos of nothing, but I just read that Tessa Thompson, Gina Rodriguez (of Jane the Virgin), and Natalie Portman will be in the next Ridley Scott project, Annihilation, a sci-fi. I really like all these ladies, so I’m clapping like a seal right now.

      • Gina says:

        So you think a black actor’s goal should be “doing nothing and be recognized”? Nice. While I think Vikander is super overestimated and pushed through awards season by Harvey Weinstein the goal to “do nothing” is weird

      • juls says:

        @Gina Weinstein is actually pushing Rooney Mara for Carol. The Danish Girl is a Focus Features movie and Ex Machina is distributed by A24.

    • Lizzie McGuire says:

      I love Carey but no one is talking about her movie so they could have had Tessa Thompson or Michael B. Jordan both having a good year. I would have love to see the guys from Straight Outta Compton out there. John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, & Oscar Isaac also could had a cover.

    • juls says:

      To be fair Ex Machina and Testament of Youth came out a year ago. All the buzz was for her terrific year.

    • Original T.C. says:

      @CK

      I agree with most of your points. However Alicia Vikander has been a critically acclaimed actress since her surprise debut in Anna Karenina, she stole the show from Keira Knightely. Then she followed up with her great co-leading performance with Mads Milkensen (sp). Two completely different performances in two languages that she had to learn. How many Hollywood actresses are even good with languages? It was from the strength of those two films that she got more roles.

      Many gossip fans just hadn’t heard of her until she was connected to Michael Fassbender or Harvey Weinstein but she has been on the map two years prior and critics thought she would have been nominated for Anna Karenina if she had two more scenes.

  7. Nev says:

    Yeah sad that there aren’t POC on the covers. W magazine used to be happening.

  8. SOCHAN says:

    Oh dear. That cover is AWFUL. Poor Alicia looks like she’s getting over the flu.

    I swear, for such a good actress she really only has two expressions for print photos: Smiling and not-smiling. If she tries any other expression it comes out all wrong.

  9. lilacflowers says:

    May I just point out that this is W magazine’s projection and not an actual list of actual Oscar nominees? The Oscars haven’t snubbed anyone yet. Samuel L. Jackson, Idris Elba, Michael B. Jordan, Straight Outta Compton, Creed, all still stand as much of a chance of nominations as anything else at this point. Of course, AMPAS may snub all of them, but it has not done so yet.

  10. Sitka says:

    Am I the only one who, when scrolling past the covers, thought Eddie Redmayne got two covers – one as his Danish Girl character?

  11. Neelyo says:

    I wish people would wise up and realize the only people who these awards matter to are the winners (paraphrased from ELECTION). It has nothing to do with art and all about marketing. They should be honest and name the awards accurately:

    1. Thank you for all of the money you’ve made (S. Bullock, J. Roberts)

    2. It’s about time even though this particular movie sucked (J. Moore most recently)

    3. You finally appeared in a good movie (K. Basinger)

    4. This is probably your last chance (J. Palance)

    Any others?

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      5. FINE. But please, leave us alone afterwards. (so many)

      This one in particular annoys me together with your no. 2. Because there are so many great actors who never received an Oscar. It’s in the numbers first of all and then sometimes your best performance happens in a year of great performances. Suck it up. I can’t defend the “Leo’s been so good for so long, give it to him.” crowd as long as Gary Oldman has not received one either.

      • Neelyo says:

        of course, I forgot about that one. Kate Winslet got it for THE READER and let’s hope Leo gets it for THE REVENANT so he can go away!

      • SusanneToo says:

        7. We should have given you this last year, but, you know, well, take it and be grateful.

    • mom2two says:

      This. 100% right.

      If Leo wins, it will be a “fine, go away.”

    • justagirl says:

      6. We like you in general, and something about the other nominees and/or their films was uncomfortable to us…Yay you for lucky timing! (MANY)

  12. Tiffany27 says:

    I would have so much more respect for these things if they just came right out and said “We just don’t give a f-ck about having diversity in our magazine”. Between MBJ, Tessa Thompson, Oscar Isaac, Idris Elba, Cary Fukunaga, Ryan Coogler, Will Smith, the Straight Outta Compton cast…………. These are your cover stars? Sit down. Sit the F-CK down.

    • ell says:

      also people like eddie redmayne and carey mulligan should not be there tbh, they haven’t had a breakthrough year because they aren’t breaking through anything, they’re already established!

    • CK says:

      They even have a list inside that includes NONE of those people out of 30 or so names. Like really, wtf, W magazine.

  13. Boston Green Eyes says:

    I thought the picture of Rooney Mara was a man in drag. Alicia looks like she was up doing lines all night and Saoirse looks like a 12 year old who spent the afternoon playing with her mother’s makeup. I think Eddie’s picture is the best.

  14. The Eternal Side-Eye says:

    Nothing grosses me out more than campaigning for these damn awards.

    Either they’re based on merit or they’re based on kissing the feet of some old studio head.

    A LOT of POC refuse to do it because how embarassing? You’ve already fought for your whole career, are constantly getting snubbed and put aside when it’s time for recognition, then when you do an amazing performance it’s not good enough. You have to go ‘campaign’ (beg, dance, and do a little show) the same people who will likely still not give you attention just further making you feel like a fool.

    I think I’d take SLJ’s response. Let me do my best damn acting and make you look stupid and shady for never recognizing me – campaigning be damned.

    Nice bunch of covers I’ll never buy. 2016, May you be the year when Hollywood realizes people have eyes.

  15. CK says:

    Actors/Actresses of Color tend to have to lose an arm and a leg to get noticed for work that is equal or superior. This is the reason that the Oscars will never be about merit. It’s not that the performances/films don’t stand up to snuff, they just don’t even get in the door.
    They also had a list of stars inside the magazine with breakthrough performances, and out of 30+ names, they only included 3-4 performers of color. No Michael B. Jordan, no Oscar Isaac, none of the Compton boys, No Tessa Thompson, No Idris Elba, No Attah or John Boyega. And this was a photo less list with no real hard cap.

    • Gina says:

      John Boyenga was awful. What did he portray? sweaty, confused emotion? Oscar Isaac was stunning in Ex-machine, though. And I’m in love with Idris Elba talent. He’s amazing

      • CK says:

        Most critics and fans seem to be in agreement that Boyega was amazing so yeah, nice try.

      • Gina says:

        The movie was generally critically acclaimed, true. But movies like Star Wars or Lord of the rings, Avatar, Star treck don’t generally bring actors Oscar nominations or talent recognition (though are enjoyable to watch). So yeah, nice try

  16. Farhi says:

    To play devil’s advocate. I would love to see more POCs and more diversity and more average/ normal looking people in the movies.
    But even on CB, which talks a lot about this subject, when was the last time there was an article about a black actress (other than Lupita, who is the current token black actress) ?
    You have to start somewhere and start building up the audience before it hits more mainstream publications.
    I heard about Vilkander, Ronan, Larson, Oscar Issacs etc here before I saw them in anything.

    • CK says:

      If there is a wall when it comes to getting mainstream press coverage, then it really doesn’t matter where you start. I read stories about Tessa Thompson, Michael B. Jordan, Chadwick Boseman, Mbatha-raw, etc. all the time, but until they get the media treatment that the media so easily lavishes on young white stars (Vikander, the annoying eco girl from the cancer film), it’s really going nowhere. I’m glad that everyone wants to f*ck Oscar Isaac now, because it was criminal that he was ignored by the awards press after “Inside Llewyn Davis” and “A Most Wanted Man”.

      • Gina says:

        While I dislike Vikander with all my heart and think she’s average at least lets discussed if she’s really “stolen” opportunities from actresses like Tessa Thompson. Could Tessa play a wife of Danish artist in mid-1920s from “the Danish Girl”? or a role of German spy from 60s in The Man from U.N.C.L.E.? Or a role of Lisbet Salander that made Rooney Mara popular (whom I also dislike)? I don’t think so. Not in terms of her talent but in terms of accuracy and how screenwriter (or book author) created the character. What stands in a way of POC writer to write a best seller and make a movie out of it? I’m overweight short person and I doubt I could steal modelling jobs from Naomi Campbell. And not because I’m being “discriminated”. Nobody says to Spike Lee “hey, make your character Chinese, because, you know, though the movie is about a black neighbourhood we would like to see more diversity”.

    • AlmondJoy says:

      Good points. I can agree with much of what you said 🤔

    • Kitten says:

      Yeah this is true but they write about celebs that bring traffic to the site and generate clicks. There aren’t a ton of POC celebs that we love to hate except for maybe Beyoncé (whom I actually like) and Will and Jada & co. Meanwhile, every one of Swifty’s banal activities gets a write-up because people will click and comment about how much they hate her.

      On the other side of the coin, they cover Viola a decent amount because she’s fantastically talented and very interesting in interviews. Taraji Henson gets a fair amount of coverage for the same reasons. I’ll probably get slammed for this but I think it’s less of an issue with the blog and more of an issue with the readers, whom I assume are predominantly white.

      • AlmondJoy says:

        Kitten, you ALSO make excellent points. I really like this convo. Glad it was brought up. Love how we can always have thoughtful and informative discussions here.

      • Farhi says:

        But whose fault it is that the POC celebrities don’t bring the traffic to the site? It is not media’s fault. They try, nobody reads it, they stop.
        If people want to talk the talk, then walk the walk. Go and read about POC actors, watch their movies.

        I don’t mean to criticize. This is how I work – if I see an issue I look for practical ways to fix it. Nobody is going to do it for me, right or wrong, fair or not.

        On the readers mix, I have an impression that this site has a higher proportion of people of color than other sites.

      • Gina says:

        You are confusing being an actor and “celebrity”. It’s not about the coverage. Daniel day-lewis doesn’t get much press and doing just fine as an actor

      • word says:

        @ Fahri

        Do you have a computer that can see us or something? No way can you tell what the skin color of celebitchy readers are. You can be all about diversity in Hollywood and be “white”.

      • Farhi says:

        “Do you have a computer that can see us or something?”

        No, but people speak of their race in the discussions. And in my head I tend to have an avatar or a blogger and when they say something about themselves, I update the picture. That is how my memory works. I like to relate to people.

      • Farhi says:

        “You are confusing being an actor and “celebrity”. It’s not about the coverage. Daniel day-lewis doesn’t get much press and doing just fine as an actor ”

        DDL has a rare talent, it is not really the baseline we are looking at. Yes, celebrity status is not required to be an actor, but it surely helps to get jobs and sell movies.

      • Kitten says:

        I think it’s safe to assume that the majority of commenters here are white, mainly because it’s an American blog and in the US, whites are the majority. I wasn’t saying anything in my comment other than white people tend to have more interest in white celebs. I wasn’t accusing anyone here, just making a general statement.

        Myself, I’m all about PoC (and Latina and Asians and ANY non-Caucasian) being represented in film, TV, media–and of course, covered on this blog. From my experience, diversity only makes things better, more interesting. I see enough f*cking white people on a daily basis and I’m all-too-familiar with The White Experience. It’s boring, redundant, and too often uninspired when ONLY white people are represented in film/television. Good casts become great casts when Hollywood aims for diversity.

        @AlmondJoy-These are my favorite kinds of discussions, even though sometimes I have to bail on a thread out of sheer exhaustion. Also, Happy New Year, Lovely :)

    • Renee28 says:

      You can’t build an audience if you’re never in magazines or blogs. Look at Vikander. How many magazine covers and articles did she have before anyone knew who she was? Even now she’s still largely unknown outside of certain circles. The media will never help build up a POC like that.

      • Farhi says:

        It wasn’t the magazine covers. It were places like tumblr and entertainment blogs and many of these are run by regular people.

      • Renee28 says:

        I’m not sure what you’re saying but if you’re implying people like Tessa Thompson, MBJ or Oscar Isaac don’t have any following on Tumblr or entertainment blogs then you’re mistaken. They’re just not given the same opportunities.

      • Gina says:

        You are confusing being an actor and “celebrity”. It’s not about the coverage. Daniel day-lewis doesn’t get much press and doing just fine as an actor.
        Not everyone should be followed by paparazzi and sell their stories to do great job.
        Or actors like Paul Dano who’s managed to work with best actors and directors in him career and is well respected. What do you want for POC actors? Cheap fame or solid careers?

      • Josefina says:

        @Fahri
        You’re greatly overestimating the power of tumblr and blogs like this. Sebastian Stan and Tom Hiddleston have some of the biggest tumblr followings, and they are hardly B-C list actors.

  17. Mira says:

    Its sad that its 2016 and they don’t even think about this ( if its a conscious choice thats even worse)
    Is W being called out for this?

  18. Minxx says:

    Really creepy covers! They managed to hide Carey’s natural beauty and made Alicia look like she’s drugged up (someone should tell her not to expose her chest so much, not her best feature). Brie looks like a soap opera star from the 80s, Saoirse is the only one who looks pretty though the hair looks funny (but I like her dress). Mara is not my favorite person but she’s actually very pretty, even on this cover. Eddie gives me the creeps, but that’s nothing new.

  19. moon says:

    The real world likes diversity, Hollywood likes young white people. I hope Eddie doesn’t get nominated, I love him but he was truly awful in TDG.

  20. Eggland's worst says:

    What is it with this magazine and their seemingly drug induced photo spreads? I remember the weird photo shoot with Gerard Butler and Jennifer Anniston where the cover was so photo-shopped it didn’t even look like Butler. I didn’t know it was him until I was told. Then, if I remember correctly, there was the photo shoot with Fassbender and Charlize Theron that came out around the time of Prometheus. Someone was smoking some serious stuff with that one.

  21. Gina says:

    But if there were a couple of black actors and directors everyone would be content? It seems like everyone forgets what diversity means. Not only black and white people live in the United States. Where are Asian nominees, Latino?
    Plus, it all causes “forced diversity”, when everyone is like “we should asap find some not-so-bad movie with actors of color and nominate it to shut everyone up”, because it seems like that what happened to “Selma” – very weak movie (on very important topic, though).
    This process should happen organically. More screenwriters of color should write scripts, more young directors of color should film their own low budget movies to prove the credibility. Examples? 1) Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos , who filmed low-budget experimental movie that got critically acclaimed and as a result he made a movie with Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz (you say that dude from Greece gets more chances to work in Hollywood with zero connections and probably a language barrier than black American?) 2) J Joanne Rowling. She wrote and invented the amazing world of Harry Potter and took part in production as a screenwriter. Do you think that everyone would ignore Harry Potter if it was written by writer of color? That could never happen. 3) Look at Alejandro Inarritu and Guillermo del Toro, they both barely speak English, still they are A list directors and made it big in Hollywood. 4) Director from Georgia (not state, eastern European country) Géla Babluani filmed his first movie IN HIS kitchen, with his relatives in main roles. It was noticed and as a result – he got to do a remake with 50 cent and Mickey Rourke. My point is – often racism and “not being white American” is just an excuse to sit on your ass and wait for being “discovered”. Look at Samuel L. Jackson, dude has more projects than anyone in Hollywood. Oh, and imagine the s**t storm if Leo Dicaprio was black? he’s actually the most snubbed actor in Hollywood

    • Farhi says:

      It is a fair point about black people born in the US, speaking the language and knowing all ins and outs is in a better position than a poor white foreigner with no connections.
      I make that point myself, but it is never well received )).
      People born in the US often don’t see the opportunities in front of them, they are blind to them because they take certain things for granted.
      Such a simple thing like speaking English without an accent is huge advantage career-wise.
      Or knowing cultural norms, being able to talk about American sports, being able to read culture specific body language and other non-verbal signs.
      Knowing how credit works, having a credit history and on and on.

      • Gina says:

        Yes! And even if “evil male white producers” don’t want to invest money in potentially brilliant movies made by directors of color, why won’t black producers do it? Jay-z invested in Rihanna and Beyonce and look at the result! They are queens of pop. Do you think there’s a single person who says “I won’t listen to Beyonce because she’s black”? There might be, but this person must collect birds, talk to himself and sleep with a gun. Racism does exist, but if we spread the fear that if you are not white you 100% will be rejected, less young people will believe in themselves and give it a try. But lest not forget that industry is cruel to anyone. Look at Hayden Christensen, he quit acting because he wasn’t offered solid roles. As far as I know he’s white, male and “textbook” attractive. But industry chewed up and spat out him. And there are plenty of stories like that.

    • word says:

      I just recently watched Selma and was disappointed in the movie. It had so much hype I really thought the movie would blow me away. It was average at best.

      Yes, I also hate it when people forget the world is not just “White and Black”. There are many cultures being left out. Something needs to change. There is a major lack of opportunity for poc…that is a fact. I mean why does Adam Sandler keep putting out garbage films? They are horrible and yet he keeps putting them out. Yet, many actually talented people aren’t getting a shot because they don’t have their foot in the door or don’t have any Hollywood connections. Film schools are filled with a lot of talented people of all ethnicities.

      With regards to the comment about “white foreigners”. Well you can learn English, you can learn the customs and culture of America and easily blend in after some time. With the internet, there are people in the tiniest remote countries who have access to American television and Youtube. POC don’t have the luxury of simply being able to “blend in”.

      By the way, knowing your credit history is not something that only Americans have to know…many countries have that.

      • Gina says:

        I agree about Adam Sandler. But he gets many chances not because he’s white. Look at horrible Eddie Murphy comedies. The last funny movie he made was in 80th. But someone keeps investing money

      • word says:

        Gina,

        Eddie Murphy (though I don’t like him personally) was a very successful stand up comedian before going into acting. He has been in some pretty successful movies. Adam Sandler, on the other hand, wasn’t the best stand up comedian. Do you remember the Sony pictures hack where executives spoke about poc and how they didn’t want to hire too many as they wanted their movies to be “universally appealing”. That right there sums up how most of Hollywood is. They want “vanilla” because most people like vanilla…or so they think.

      • Gina says:

        You are right, most of decisions in Hollywood are driven by money. Even when POC movies comes out it’s only to drive POC audience, not because of equality.
        Adam Sandler must have sold some tickets. Nobody would invest in him otherwise. Though I personally dislike him very much and find him unfunny.
        but what do you mean by “most people like vanilla”? Why would a black person prefer white actor over black actor? I think demand begets supply.

      • Farhi says:

        “With regards to the comment about “white foreigners”. Well you can learn English, you can learn the customs and culture of America and easily blend in after some time.”

        You cannot ever blend in completely. You can come close after 10 years. But in entertainment 10 years is a lifetime. And that is exactly it, every foreigner in Hollywood who comes from somewhere other than former British world (UK, Australia, Canada, US) already starts 10 years behind all other things being equal.

        Look at Garcia Bernal, for example. Amazingly beautiful and talented and smart actor but did he ever have a chance? He spoke recently about his drama education in the UK and how most teachers wanted to work on his accent , but he wanted to work on the acting.

        it is a tangent discussion, it doesn’t really matter who got it worse. But Gina has a point – get the bull by the horn and do something.

      • Farhi says:

        ” agree about Adam Sandler. But he gets many chances not because he’s white”

        Yep, it is because the audiences like what he makes. I just saw a headline this morning that his movie Ridiculous 8 (or something) was the most watched on Netflix. Money talks.
        I don’t think I ever watched anything of his.

      • word says:

        @ Gina

        I’m not saying “most people like vanilla”…it’s what the big producers in Hollywood believe. THEY believe (and there is proof) that “vanilla” sells the most. The Sony hack proved it. I personally think diversity would “sell” the most but most of Hollywood is afraid to try !

    • censored says:

      @Gina
      If you really think POC are sitting on their a$$ and waiting to be discovered then you are a part of the problem. Nothing new to see here folks bootstraps, false equivalencies and yeh that one token examplee of the Good POC aka known as what about Oprah ? LOL

      • Gina says:

        I never said that POC are “sitting on their asses”. I said SOME people use it as an excuse when the industry is generally very cruel and writes people off just like that.
        And when my point is optimistic and encouraging like “POC actors and directors should keep trying and creating unique content (like Harry Potter) or unique screenplay that will make you successful and popular” your point seems to be “no, let’s keep whining about racism and “evil white producers”

      • Nik says:

        Gina, you sound incredibly ignorant and foolish on racism in the industry.

      • Gina says:

        @Nik, I wouldn’t be if someone bothered to prove some point instead of insulting.
        You think that amazing and unique content created by POC will not attract an audience? I refuse to believe that. Imagine if Beyonce though so. True, that lots of talented people are not appreciated and I can name at least 50 underrated actors of every race. But there’s the difference between being working actor and “celebrity”. And there are many other reasons behind that besides racism

      • Gina says:

        @Nik, look at Woody Allen. Half of his movies are trash, he can barely get financing but A list actors work with him for nothing. Is it because he’s white? Or because he has created a unique genre in cinematography and because he writes his own (often pretty clever) scripts?
        Look at what Shonda Rhimes has accomplished. She created a tv show with POC characters and it’s wildly successful. Is my point so stupid?

      • Kitten says:

        I’m not even trying to dive into the conversation but I just wanted to point out to Gina: the problem is that all your examples ignore systemic racism. Like, you can’t somehow extract that from the equation or you’re left with a bunch of false parallels.

        Sure, Hollywood is hard on immigrants, outsiders, women, unattractive people, overweight people, and just about anyone who isn’t white, male and good-looking. But a white male immigrant in Hwood is still in a far more advantageous position than a black female immigrant, for instance. In other words, generally-speaking PoCs and any non-white person is almost always at a disadvantage. Hollywood is no different from society at large in that sense, with non-whites being at the bottom of the totem pole. The reality is that as a black woman Shonda Rhimes is actually the exception to the rule and probably had to work 200 times harder than Woody Allen to achieve the success that she has.

        It’s also worth pointing out that Miss Rhimes is exceptionally-talented, much more so than many of her white male counterparts who are continually recognized and rewarded for comparatively mediocre ability.

      • censored says:

        @ Gina “your point seems to be “no, let’s keep whining about racism and “evil white producers”
        Really you got that from my one comment …LOL well no that not the point or the tone of the article YOU are the one who has been dragging the convo in that direction ,Many posters gave several names of POC who were working /delivering performances that were at least NO LESS than the people the Media and W in particular seeks to highlight continuously and these POC are routinely IGNORED
        Its a chicken and Egg , Yes the media highlights those who are note worthy , yet some relative unknown become more worthy with media attention and garner more opportunities / fans etc. Not one person here accused anyone of “stealing ” ?? most just commented how uneven the playing field was
        You need to ask yourself why is it when anyone says diversity is a problem (which it is ) YOU HEAR “they hate evil white producers ” or feel the need to remind us that there are white actors struggling too ..(Uuhnm we know that and that wasnt what the article was about )
        #allactorslivesmatter LOL

      • Gina says:

        @Kitten I see your point. But the reality is – Hollywood is hard on white good-looking man also. Look at an example of Hayden Christensen. Or Baldwin brothers (except Alec). They have connections, they are white and attractive. why aren’t they popular? Or Jon Hamm, who’s very attractive but got fist decent role in his 40s and struggling to get any acting job for 20 years.
        Or Reese Witherspoon ex-husband Ryan Phillippe? He’s very good looking but he’s never had his breakthrough role. The fact is – only 1% of people achieve success in this industry. But the facts are manipulated as if every white pretty dude gets an oscar right away.
        While I like Shonda Rhimes shows as an entertainment, they are pretty mediocre in terms of script and acting too. It’s not the level of Breaking Bad or any other non-soap opera show. Woody Allen makes one movie a year, I doubt that there’s someone more hard working (and I assume he’s a little bit insane).
        Also, look at music industry. Half of every playlist consists of talented black musicians. More and more names appear. And why? Because there are more COP-owned labels, more COP producers, etc. This dynamic is great.

      • Mary-Alic says:

        “But a white male immigrant in Hwood is still in a far more advantageous position than a black female immigrant, for instance. ”"

        That’s a fairy tale narrative. No, no immigrant with an accent and no connections is better placed than any , ANY local. Gina is aboslutely right but what she says is objected because it prevents the ever going “oh, racism” to keep going.

    • Bridget says:

      Statistically, the split is about even between men and women graduating film school, and yet by the time we get to the directors choosing who they hire to direct their movies, the choice is overwhelmingly white male. This isn’t a question of “not sitting on their butts” it’s a pretty serious, systemic issue when it comes to who is being chosen for big budget, ‘important’ movies, or anything beyond small budget indies. Because it isn’t a question of talent or qualifications. Just look at the examples you’ve chosen: a Greek, and Eastern European, and then two Oscar winning/nominated Latino directors?

      There is a serious breakdown when it comes to who is getting the meetings, who’s being mentored, who has doors being opened, and I find it ironic that you use Shonda Rhimes as an example, as 1) she’s on TV; 2) she *just* had a major publication refer to hear as an “angry black woman”, and 3) she is one of the MOST successful producers on television, and yet she gets none of the same respect. And can you name many other producers of her stature that are either women or a POC?

    • Original T.C. says:

      Gina,

      There are VAST novels and historical tales about Black people, the problem is getting Hollywood moneymakers, studio heads and producers to invest in these stories. Blacks have been around since the dawn of time and there are millions upon millions of them all over the world. These include African writers and novelists.

      There are tiredless articles in Black magazines of novelists, directors and actresses trying to get a historical film about Blacks that is not solely about slavery. You can’t even get your toe in the room to have your proposals heard. Violet Davis had to commission her own film about a famous Black female State senator and that’s going to take like 5 years to get all the parts together. Lupita is also is working on staring in a film based on a best-selling novel written by an African woman in the vein of Brooklyn. She started 2 years ago. You might not have heard about these things because mainstream media does not care to cover it.

      Ditto there are millions of novels based on even white women and histories of famous White women not tied to a man but those too are barely made each year. I’m glad you brought up this topic but I think you are missing the facts of the case due to lack of education on the topic (understandably because again mainstream media ignores these stories)

      P.S. It’s easier for immigrants in SOME ways because they are seen as “unique and interesting”, not tied to American minorities. So less racism or prejudice directed at them. They are seen as the “good” minorities. Again there are books written on this subject.

      • Farhi says:

        “There are tiredless articles in Black magazines of novelists, directors and actresses trying to get a historical film about Blacks”

        The only solution to this chicken-and-egg problem I see is a grass roots solution. Make sure you go and see the productions that do get made. Make sure your friends and your circle know about them
        People above said tumblr and such are not influential compared to the regular media. True, but it is still better than nothing. It is a platform.
        Only when studios see profits from such productions and enthusiasm from the audiences they will become mainstream. To make profits regular people need to spend money on those productions and not the umpteenth Star Wars movie or 50 Shades of Gray or what have you.

      • Dez says:

        I love Netflix black movie section especially the romantic ones because I get to see a lot of talented actors of color that “Hollywood” feels are not good enough. this seems to be the only way to support these movies since they don’t make it to the theater or are Hollywood promoted. The funny thing about all this is how some white people were outraged about the Wiz Live not having any white actors but forgetting that WOZ was an all white production. Well people of color feel that way every time they turn on the tv or go to the movies and read a magazine. Prince of Egypt didn’t have any Egyptians in it did it, but we want to talk about accuracy in movies. POC have been here as long as white people and have lived among them during these “accuracy times”, but I forgot blacks and other nonwhites just became human around the 1960s time frame.

      • Gina says:

        @Original T.C., yeah, I know. Like one of my favourite writer James Baldwin whom, I bet, most people here don’t even know. But what is your message? There is in fact enough books with black heroes but nobody wants to adapt them into a screenplay? Because evil white male producers are racists? Should we force them? put a gun to their heads? Or create something that will be interesting to a public? All you say is “there should be more POC actors and directors, and I agree. But how? when i say that more content should be generated by POC, everyone yells at me. What is your option? Make “evil rich producers” give away their money on projects that you choose?)

      • Bridget says:

        @Gina:
        I feel like you’re missing something. Yes, you’re saying that more content should be generated by POC. But you’re also missing a huge step: there needs to be more diverse representation in mainstream entertainment. Not just small, indie movies, but in wide, mainstream releases. And considering the state of the American box office (and it’s reliance on properties like comic book characters, sequels, reboots – all ‘known’ properties and safe bets) where more and more big movies are ‘misses’ it’s becoming obvious that the powers that be within the studio system aren’t accurately reading what the American public wants. You’re looking to them to lead when they are almost by definition followers – studio execs and producers who are investing millions and millions of dollars want to make the absolute safest bet possible, and to them that means having the schlubby guy in the hoodie directing some interchangeable mid-level actor and actress. Take for example the aforementioned superhero movies: you can have plenty of ‘misses’ – The Punisher, The Green Lantern, The Green Hornet – and they’re just considered bad movies and will try again. But have one starring a woman and it doesn’t do well? Well that means that women led-superhero movies just don’t sell.

        Spike Lee has talked about how important it is for him to hire POC to work on his movies, because most movies only hire Union workers, but it’s impossible to get into the Union without experience. There’s something seriously wrong with the system that there are plenty of talented, qualified women and POC in film school and making television and movies, but when it comes time to work within the studio system its only the schlubby white men that are hired. Essentially, you have to be in to get in. If you haven’t already, you should really read the Hollywood Reporter’s recent story about women directors.

  22. Gina says:

    Seriously, you guys, can someone tell me how the diversity issue can be solved except to encourage POC writers/directors create interesting stories about POC? Because, as I’ve said it before while I dislike Vikander I doubt she’s really “stolen” opportunities from actresses like Tessa Thompson. Could Tessa play a wife of Danish artist in mid-1920s from “the Danish Girl”? or a role of German spy from 60s in The Man from U.N.C.L.E.? Or a role of a British woman during World War I in “Testament of youth”? Or a role of Swedish Lisbet Salander that made Rooney Mara popular (whom I also dislike)? I don’t think so. Any war movie, or historic movie about monarchy, or movies based on books written by white authors about their lives. Should these people be blamed and hated because they’ve turned to life some parts of history or stories about themselves or their experiences?

    • petitehirondelle says:

      you are true about that… For me, the biggest problem of Oscars is not even diversity but the fact that it is a circus. More and more people know that this is when actor campaign and are pushed by studios or important person that they can have one…. I’am not a fan of Vikander because of that, still have the feeling that she was too much all of sudden in the press and everywhere… even if people mainly still don’t remember her (and Oscar will ot change that). If we must take time to think about all the actors and films who have been released and are snubbed, it will take a long time

    • Colored Francie says:

      Yes, the POC “creatives” (writers, directors, actors) need to continue to create content and/or improve their skills all the time. Without support from the members of the overwhelmingly white production, distribution, and finance sectors of the entertainment industry, how far that original, racially diverse content goes – especially where it can be seen by mainstream (ie, white) audiences is not guaranteed.

      And it doesn’t even have to be that the production side does it because they “care about diversity.” They should do it because they care about money, and film and television with racially diverse casts can ABSOLUTELY be profitable.

    • Bridget says:

      It isn’t that VIkander is stealing roles, the point that people are making is this: why are the only roles that are considered worthy of highlighting are the ones that are played by the white actors?

      Support diverse productions. Look at what’s happening with TV: it turns out that people actually watch shows with black/asian/latino stars. Heck, even Star Wars is being fronted by a woman and a black man. Show that diverse productions can make money.

    • Dez says:

      Prince of Egypt didn’t have any Egyptians in it did it? but we want to talk about accuracy in movies. Black people lived in Europe as far as the days before the crusades. Alexander Dumas was black. Shakespeare’s Othello had a black character in it. So don’t say accuracy is a problem. POC have been here as long as white people and have lived among them during these “accuracy times”, but I forgot blacks and other nonwhites just became human around the 1960s time frame. Just because we have been kept out of the history books except for slavery don’t think we didn’t live during that time. People with power can write whatever narrative they like, to include one without POC.

      • Jo 'Mama' Besser says:

        Thank-you. Think of Saint Maurice, we’ve been here the whole time.

      • Mary-Alic says:

        “Alexander Dumas was black. ”

        ROFL Priceless!!! Oh, what happens on every and any thread even slightly touching on colour on an American blog!! ROFL

        Meanwhile in real life, Dumas -perre had 1/4 dark heritage at best tnrough his grandfather’s mistress whose son the grandfather educated properly and took care to acknowledge. Therefore, all hilarious pictures on Google do not make a man black. As someone who grew up partly in France, loves Dumas and has seen real pictures of all his family, I am appalled by such statements made with such authoritative tone. And Dumas himself was as white as it gets.

  23. Aubrey says:

    I clicked through to see what Benicio Del Toro said and it did not disappoint.

  24. lila fowler says:

    Rooney Mara is not cute.

  25. Ally Pally says:

    This is the first year I’ve ever really paid attention to the Oscars. I think it’s because I’m the precise same age as the oldest of them and I find Eddie Redmayne and his altruism fascinating, in a kind looking into the sun of way: I shouldn’t, but I do, and now I’m seeing spots. I’m cool with not seeing him again until Wimbledon and as for the rest of them… I’m truly bored with the homogeneity of the entire event: young, white, and brilliant at mimicry? Here’s an Oscar.

    Charlotte Rampling is rumored to get an Oscar nod and I would LOVE that if only because I’d like to see an actress who has truly earned the honour through a long and consistent career. The whole circus needs an overhaul, it’s lost its appeal and the feeling that this was truly a special, crazy night.

    *My opinion may be shaded by the fact that I just took down the Christmas tree, so I may be somewhat projecting.