The Rev. Al Sharpton put the industry on notice at an Oscar protest today that “this will be the last year of the all-white Oscars.” Speaking to a crowd of about 200 several blocks from the Oscars ceremony, the MSNBC host vowed that “next time we’re going to organize a lot longer and a lot stronger.”
He then led protesters on a march around the parking lot of the St. George Dental Clinic at the corner of Sunset and Highland, near the Dolby Theatre where the 88th Academy Awards are being handed out tonight.
Overall, the atmosphere was upbeat and celebratory, with organizers chanting “Show me what diversity looks like” against a hip-hop beat playing over a loud speaker. Across the street in front of the Chick-fil-A, a lone protester with a “Jesus Saves” banner shouted over a bullhorn that “Hollywood is the synagogue of Satan.”
Earlier in the day, Sharpton spoke at the First AME Church in Los Angeles. “There are no blacks who can greenlight a film,” he told the congregation. “We can put a black family in the White House, but we can’t put a black in the boardroom of power in Hollywood.”