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Jada Pinkett Smith Floats Oscar Boycott After People Of Color Snubbed

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.

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.



  1. Will smith is the only outright omission that I would consider but there are a lot of other actors who didn’t make the cut like Johnny Depp

      1. Haha. Jordan didn’t deserve a nomination for creed. The only nomination he deserves is a razzie for the horrible fantastic 4.

        1. Jordan was the best thing about Fantastic Four even if I questioned his casting.

          Can’t blame an actor for a director, writer and studios incompetence.

    1. we r talking black here. i stopped watching the oscars because of this. jada is right. so everybody who isnt black should shut up. your best friend being black doesnt make you black or understand what it means to be black.

      1. So black people can judge tby he colour of skin??? There are no more american actors, but black and white people??? So welcome to the 18th century…:-D

    2. Benicio Del Toro? Great in Sicario. Oscar Isaac (He’s hispanic) – great in Exmachina. Michael Jordan – magnificant in Creed.

      But these are the “think out of the box” performances and movies that Oscar members don’t like or don’t see.

    3. Will Smith’s awful accent in the movie disqualifies his performance from any realistic Oscar discussion. Razzie? Yes. Oscar? No. If he was so upset over his lack of nomination, he should have manned up and spoke out himself. Instead he’s a coward and had his wife do it.

      1. Agreed, sorry the performance in concussion was not that great and certainly not good enough for an Oscar and yes I am black.

  2. When there are so many worthy places to direct one’s outrage in the world, even inside the parentheses of racial inequality, THIS is what JPS is going to organize a boycott of? An awards show that failed to recognize her husband? She should flip through a Newsweek once in a while.
    And what exactly is the right number of minority nominees to clear the accusations of racism? How do we know when the bulk of performances by minority actors simply weren’t better than others vs. when administrative evil is at work?
    I feel like there’s some connection between the intention behind this boycott and a film as bad as 12 YEARS A SLAVE winning best picture. Would anyone like to jump in and help me understand what it is? Come on, the water’s fine!

    1. I’d gladly jump in but your line of questioning stinks of racism in and of itself and therefore shouldn’t be dignified by an answer. A response maybe, but an answer no.

    2. She didn’t say she was organizing a boycott. She’s expressing how she feels and questioning whether or not people of color in the industry should continue to support the Academy Awards. You may or may not agree with her, but she does have a right to express her views.

      There is no “right number” of minority nominees – the problem is there were none in the acting categories and when that happens in the year 2016, people are going to notice. It is possible that not every voting member of the Academy actually took the time watch every movie (I doubt everyone in the Academy bothered to watch “Straight Out of Compton”, “Concussion”, or “The Force Awakens”) and some good work was overlooked. Whatever the reason, there is no denying that there is a problem that cannot be ignored.

      1. It is possible that not every voting member of the Academy actually took the time watch every movie (I doubt everyone in the Academy bothered to watch “Straight Out of Compton”, “Concussion”, or “The Force Awakens”)
        True. I read some time ago that many academy members give their screeners to their family members and personal assistants to watch the movies.
        Members should be given a paper to sign – certifying that they watched the movie (or not). They can only vote on the movies they saw….not their family or friend.
        Better yet how about this — Pick the top 20 movies of the year by ratings (above 85%) and only vote on those 20 movies. If there’s a performance or movie that REALLY REALLY gets lots of buzz that’s not on the list, send that movie also.

        Think about it – how many movies are released a year? and how many screeners do those members have to watch? I was listening to a SAG radio host and he said he just got his screeners and he had 2 weeks to watch every performance & movie/TV show and he just didn’t have the time.

      2. your statement that there is no right number is correct. we don’t need quotas for awards. there is no problem.

    3. I agree, unite together don’t just complain that your rapper husband Will Smith was not nominated. He is a now successful actor who started out as a brash rapper and later made it as an actor. Stand up together and unite black actors TOGETHER in UNITY! Power to the PEOPLE!

      1. When was Will Smith ever a “brash” rapper? You have obviously never even listened to one song! He is the king of clean in his music AND that was like 20 years ago…been an acclaimed actor ever since.

    4. Our society has truly become schizophrenic. We have elected a president who is a person of color, there are many additional political leaders of color and yet racism is rampant in our nation. There is no clear answer except to maybe relax and love your neighbor.

    5. The only way she can boycott is to ask the American public not to watch the show. But — I predict low ratings anyway, because none of the movies are of interest to the general audience.

  3. Will Packer is decrying lack of diversity, but the writers for all his movies are white including Straight Outta Compton. Maybe Jada should start with boycotting Will Packer’s movies since the only black people involved with his movies the ones onscreen and his director, Tim Story. WILL PACKER HAS NEVER HIRED A SINGLE BLACK WRITER IN HIS HOLLYWOOD CAREER. Start the boycott right there.

  4. What about Idris Elba or Abraham Attah? You know something is up when Jennifer Lawrenece is nominated for her lukewarm performance.

  5. What about the boycott that should have been staged in 1974 when Gordon Willis wasn’t nominated for GODFATHER PART 2…one of the most beautifully photographed films of all time. The winner that year was THE TOWERING INFERNO…a big budget television movie. And this was after he was overlooked for the first GODFATHER. The sad fact is that sometimes AMPAS members just don’t like the work of certain artists.

    1. Max, there are any number of misfires when it comes to the Oscar going to the less deserving (E.T. didn’t win best picture??) but I think you’re wrong about The Towering Inferno being just a “big budget television movie”. Yes, The Godfather II is a gorgeous looking film but I don’t think the Academy voters got it so terribly wrong to vote for Inferno. That film was a monster of a shoot with exceedingly difficult elements at play. There were two first unit crews, two second unit crews and a visual f/x crew all working simultaneously. This was hardly some t.v. movie – in fact, it was a throw-back to a classic big studio approach to filmmaking. I think those Oscars (for Fred Koenekamp and Joseph Biroc) were hard-earned and that crew, richly deserving.

  6. When has an amazing performance by a black actor been disregarded in favour of a terrible one by a white actor. Can anyone name one instance? Because that must be the test, not simply that a good black performance must always trump a good white one. Nor is personal preference the test. I would have preferred to see Depp nominated over Redmayne this year. JPS would have preferred her husband. Her preference isn’t more worthy than mine because she chooses to use the issue of skin colour.

    She and her husband have made millions from the industry – what has they done for all these supposedly hugely accomplished people? What initiatives have they funded to get talented people of colour into the industry? That’s how you effect change, real change – not by giving Will Smith an Oscar.
    And, does she have a view on why Jamie Fox and Forest Whittaker are Oscar winners but Leo is not?
    Or why Jennifer Hudson is an Oscar winner but David Fincher is not?

    1. Angela Bassett in ‘What Love Got To Do With It’ she was brilliant but they gave it Jessica Tandy in ‘Driving Miss Daisy’ cause she was old.

      1. They awarded the Oscar to Jessica Tandy because more members of the actors’ branch judged her performance to be superior, her age had nothing to do with it.

      2. I’m going to guess (strongly) that you didn’t see Driving Miss Daisy. It was a brilliant film with amazing performances by Jessica Tandy, Morgan Freeman and Dan Akroyd. Angela (who always delivers, one of my favorite actresses, should have been nominated for Waiting to Exhale. Heartbreaking performance) also gave a great performance. Apples and oranges. Two dynamic performances, Jessica won. But to dismiss Jessica’s win as, “oh, she was old” is ignorant. The play won a Pulitzer Prize and Jessica was an accomplished stage and screen actress. If you haven’t seen the film, you should. It’s on my top ten favorite films list.

      3. Angela Bassett was nominated in 1993 for What’s love got to do with it and she didn’t lose the oscar to jessica tandy who was nominated in 1989. angie lost it to Holly Hunter in The Piano. Check for facts before you write something.

    2. To answer your initial question — Denzel Washington should have won Best Actor for Malcolm X, not Al Pacino in Scent of a Woman. Denzel delivered a stunning performance, and the Academy’s nervousness about honoring a controversial figure such as Malcolm X was at the heart of the decision.

      1. You have to remember that the Academy doesn’t always give the Oscar for the performance as much as your body of work. For example: Pacino won for scent of a woman for a performance that was pitiful compared to his prior nominated performances. Also, that you bring up Denzel, while he was great, he probably shouldn’t have beaten Russel Crowe when he took home the best actor Oscar, BUT Crowe won the year before for an ok performance, which was really the Oscar he was “owed” for the insider. It’s all politics. Let’s not discredit a talented person’s work because they weren’t a preferable shade. Besides, the Oscars rarely get everything right.

      2. Both Washington and Bassett were nominated. They were not ignored which is Smith’s point. Who ‘should’ have won is a matter of personal opinion, nothing to do with skin colour. I preferred Di Caprio over Matthew Mc, Michael Keaton over Redmayne, Sally Field over Anne Hathaway etc etc.

        My earlier point was that there is no instance of the Academy blatantly ignoring an objectively great black performance for an objectively bad white one.

        This is about Will Smith wanting the glory of Oscar. Period.

      3. @Heft and Elias…good examples, but I believe both of them have nothing to do with race but rather the staid thinking of the AMPAS. They love to give Oscars for careers as well. Tandy and Pacino are great examples. Another one…Tommy Lee Jones for The Fugitive over both Leo for Gilbert Grape and Ralph Fiennes for Schindler’s List….I mean, seriously???? Or how about John Wayne’s win? So undeserved for True Grit but not if you think it’s his last chance.

        I’m not saying there isn’t bias (and sometimes racism) but just letting you know the historical perspective of your examples and why they don’t fit. Something to chew on at least.

  7. It’s unusual that such towering performances as Idris Elba and Benicio Del Toro would be snubbed but great performances people of all races and ages are snubbed every year. Jada will no doubt love for her husband to win an Oscar but actors like Leonardo DiCaprio have toiled for years with an award so you can’t always cry racism just because hubby didn’t get a nomination for his football concussion movie.

    1. She is talking about a nomination not an award; at this juncture the awards have yet to be given. And I believe Leo Di has been nominated 6 times vs Will Smith’s 2. They have toiled just the same not to mention there are more opportunities to do Oscar calibers films for whites vs any other color….but that will soon change just as everything else has.

    1. The only Oscar nomination for that one which confused me is BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY. I don’t believe something based on actual people should count for that one.

      1. As long as a story’s not based on an actual book, play or piece in any other medium, it’s technically considered to be an original screenplay, being the first time the story of someone’s biography has been officially told.

    2. But neither was Brooklyn Oscar worthy. But it got a nomination when it was just a glorified Lifetime movie.

  8. The problem with Concussion is that Will Smith gave a great performance in an erratic movie that few people saw since it attacks one of the main religions in America, football. I think the problems with lack of diversity in films goes back to who’s writing, who’s producing and who’s directing. More diverse writers, producers and directors will help lead to more diverse cast and crews and to more diverse award nominees and winners.

  9. If Will had been nominated would she find this so troubling? Her husband has been making more money than 98.99998 % of all working actors, and even more than that when it comes to black actors. Hollywood has been color blind when it comes to this family and her husband has been way over paid. Suddenly Will is black? Suddenly he’s being mistreated?
    That’s a good one. Cry me a river in your luxury mansion, Jada.

  10. The real travesty was in 2007 when Will Smith was nominated for that Lifetime movie The Pursuit of Happiness and folks like Denzel Washington (Inside Man) and Jamie Foxx (Dreamgirls) were ignored for their work…Guess she wasn’t complaining back then.

    If Will Smith was nominated this year, it would’ve been unbelievable since the movie starred one of the biggest stars on the planet, about the biggest sport in the country, opened in nearly 3000 screens and it has only managed to make $35 million, virtually ignored by audiences and critics groups. I guess an Oscar-nom would’ve made it all worth it.

    I love how people complaining are listing every black actor that was in a movie this year, yet none seemed to have done well in critics/guild awards. I love Samuel L Jackson as much as the next guy, but no one called out his name as a potential nominee–now, there is outrage he wasn’t nominated.

    In fact, the only actor/actress folks thought had a good chance of landing a nomination was Idris Elba, but I actually think this is more of a Netflix backlash than anything else. Would be interesting to see if Netflix can break into the Oscars outside of the Docs categories.

    1. I agree about the Netflix problem, also the fact that Beast of No Nation flopped hard when it opened in movie theaters. Had it been a studio movie with a more traditional distribution strategy, Elba would have gained more traction. I was also disappointed Elba didn’t campaign just a bit more -Benicio Del Toro didn’t really campaign that much either and it’s a shame because he was fantastic in Sicario- , he really deserved a nomination and Cari Fukunaga too.

  11. This was an extremely competitive year for nominations. If the Academy returns to 10 best picture nominees where members vote i for their top 5 picks, then Straight Outta Compton probably would have been nominated for best picture, along with Carol or Star Wars. Will Smith was in extremely competitive company (where’s Tom Hanks, Johnny Depp and so many others?). Elba most certainly was Oscar-worthy, but, again, the supporting category is extremely competitive (where’s Benicio del Toro, Michael Shannon, Michael Keaton, and so many others?). No one should simply be nominated because they are of a certain skin color. Their fate should be decided like everyone else’s: on a level playing field. The Academy is, in no way, deliberately avoiding anyone of color.

    1. While the Academy probably isn’t deliberately excluding people based on race, which would be EXPLICITLY racist, having SUBTLE biases is a VERY real thing. If 90% of the academy fits the same description it’s safe to say they all pretty much like the same things, hence will vote alike. Is this racism? Not really but it’s the exact reason the academy needs to diversify its membership. It’s hard to be objective when it comes to art, sometimes you like what you like. How can “Straight Outta Compton” expect a nomination if the members flatly refused to watch it? The film wasn’t given a fair shot. A true film buff gives everything a fair shot. When you do you might discover a film that pleasantly surprises you.

  12. The real problem here is Hollywood’s lack of acceptance of the reality that they are not the ones making the films that carry the art of film making, Hollywood’s Academy Awards is just one of the last few remnants of a business that is dying in America and is being carried by the International Market, and I for one cannot wait until that stupid little golden guy is done away with once and for all.

    1. Was just saying the same thing today. There’s no real quality in the Best Picture category. All the nominees are okay, but none are excellent.

      1. Well, I dunno about that. The little, unpretentious BROOKLYN was, much to my surprise, practically perfect in every way. A real gem.

    2. While I agree the major studies put out some crappy product (I prefer character driven indies), the golden statue isn’t going anywhere. It’s an award given to actors, actresses, directors, producers, etc. by their peers. You ask any industry participant and it’s definitely an accolade they rank high on their “gotta have one” list. There may be viewers who have fallen out of love, but not the potential recipients. It confirms acceptance, applauds talent and can raise their income and their accessibility to sought after projects. That little golden guy ain’t going anywhere.

  13. You’ve made it in one of the hardest industries to crack as have many others of color. You are all wealthy beyond your dreams and consistently employed. But, you want to cry about not getting a chance to win a trinket?

    If I’m getting paid and love what I do for a living (a privilege not everyone has), I don’t need some paper weight given out by a groups subjective tastes that I could give two “s” about.

    But then, we all know the Smiths don’t live in reality anyway.

    Boo hoo.

  14. Maybe Asians should boycott too? I mean no Asians nominated in an acting category. Jada should boycott by not showing up at the Oscars or watching it on TV. Also, is Jada a member of the Academy? Ryan Coogler should have gotten a best director for what he did with Creed.

  15. Mo’Nique, Denzel Washington, Jamie Foxx, Forest Whitaker, Halle Berry, Lupita Nyong’o, Morgan Freeman, Cuba Gooding Jr, Octavia Spencer, 12 Years a Slave

  16. Doesn’t she realize this is a group of thousands of people who randomly check boxes of people they’ve heard of before? While I’d agree that they snubbed Cooler and Jordan, they were never really part of the conversation this year. Smith got a Golden Globe nomination, but his film was terrible, so….

  17. Note to black entertainers, if you want guaranteed Oscar nominations, you have to make Oscar bait. Use the following recipe: period piece, British people, some type of physical ailment. Bake at 375 degrees for 120 minutes.

  18. the crazy part about it, out of all the black movies that didn’t get nominated Creed, Concision, Straight out of Compton, Beast of no Nation (which was really good) the only people that did get nominated out of those films I just named was the writers for Straight out of Compton, and they are white lol. Hollywood can be racist and very arrogant. What I don’t get is why Dr Dre and Ice Cube let a gay Jewish white man from Connecticut tell they story, He even said that he never even heard their music before and this was is first writing job. Why didn’t they give it to a young black talented writer from Compton or South Central, and don’t say there are none I know a gang of very talented black writers out here in LA and growed up right in the hoods of Los Angeles. But they’re frustrated and working at a job they hate because they are never given a shot. We are the most retarded race for that. knowing how hard it is for a black person to come up in this UNITED States of America, when one of us does come up and build something we always quickly turn our backs on our own and start hiring white folks to work for us. WHY DO WE WANT TO BE A PART OF THEIR WORLD SO BAD. We run out and buy what they like that’s expensive Louie Vuitton, Phantoms and they don’t even want us in their stores. (How many times has Oprah not been let in at one of those high priced stores and she can buy the whole building) We need to start building, taking care and hiring our own. Lets stop trying to appease these muthafuckers

  19. Insane. Her husband is a huge star that has been making a string of mediocre movies. It’s not our fault Earth A.D. was lousy. It’s not our fault that he’s not a strong dramatic actor. Just because she WANTS her husband to get an Oscar doesn’t mean we HAVE to give him one. “Straight Outta Compton” is my favorite movie of the year – but it doesn’t deserve any major award. The acting was better than I was hoping, the story was fun and took care to paint the heroes in a good light, sometimes to the detriment of the film. Jerry Heller got off easy, wasting Paul Giamatti, and the likes of MC Ren and the D.O.C. didn’t get the screen time they deserved.
    Spike Lee deserved an Oscar for “Do the Right Thing,” but his stiff directing style has not turned out the best material since, despite the strong, important messages. What are we supposed to do? Give Tyler Perry and Marlon Wayans Oscars? Maybe Miss Pinkett-Smith needs to find somebody that can churn out a good movie. Will has the money. He can bankroll it.

  20. Sour Grapes because your husband did not get a Nomination.
    FYI he STANK . That horibly BAD “african” accent should gt him banned from the Screen Actors Guild!

    1. everyone s values are so mixed up and in the toilet!! Too bad we can’t focus on what really is important and help one another instead of being so privileged and still whining and complaining. Why don’t they take their money and help people anonymously once in a while instead of needing a gold statue to make you feel like you ‘have arrived’, or really is it so that once you win the gold man you make even more money for mediocre movies at best!!

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