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The Academy Announces Next Phase of Equity & Inclusion Initiative

June 12, 2020 | By

AMPAS.OscarsToday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the next phase of its equity and inclusion initiative, Academy Aperture 2025.  This phased initiative will further the Academy’s ongoing efforts to advance inclusion in the entertainment industry and increase representation within its membership and the greater film community.

The first phase of the initiative outlines specific goals for the Oscars and Academy governance, membership, and workplace culture:

The Academy will encourage equitable hiring practices and representation on and off screen in order to better reflect the diversity of the film community.  To ensure more diverse representation, and in collaboration with the Producers Guild of America (PGA), the Academy will create a task force of industry leaders, appointed by David Rubin and that will include governor and A2020 Committee chair DeVon Franklin, to develop and implement new representation and inclusion standards for Oscars eligibility by July 31, 2020.  Eligibility for films in consideration for the 93rd Academy Awards (2020) will not be impacted.

This past January, the current Board of Governors participated in unconscious bias training. Moving forward, this training will be mandatory for all Academy governors, branch executive committee members and Academy staff on an annual basis.  All 9,000+ members will be offered an opportunity to participate in training as well.

Additionally, the Board of Governors passed a resolution to amend the Academy bylaws to enact maximum governor term limits. Once the amendment takes effect, governors will be allowed to serve on the board for up to two three-year terms (consecutive or non-consecutive), followed by a two-year hiatus, after which eligibility renews for up to two additional three-year terms, for a lifetime maximum of 12 years. The previous limit was three consecutive three-year terms, with a one-year hiatus, and no lifetime maximum.

The Academy will host a series of panels called “Academy Dialogue: It Starts with Us” for members and the public, with conversations about race, ethnicity, history, opportunity, and the art of filmmaking. Programs will include a conversation hosted by Academy governor Whoopi Goldberg on the lasting impact of racist tropes and harmful stereotypes in Hollywood films. The Academy will also present conversations on the systemic changes that need to occur in areas such as casting, screenwriting, producing, directing, financing and greenlighting of movies in order to afford opportunities to women and people of color and to help create a new narrative for recovery.

The Academy Museum will also create spaces that highlight and prioritize the experience of traditionally underrepresented or marginalized people while advancing the understanding, celebration, preservation, and accessibility of movies through its business practices, exhibitions, screenings, programs, initiatives, and collections.

The Academy will establish an Office of Representation, Inclusion and Equity to oversee the Aperture 2025 initiative and work with the Board of Governors, Academy staff and experts to ensure the implementation of best practices and accountability throughout the organization. The office will be led by Academy COO Christine Simmons, in partnership with Lorenza Muñoz, Managing Director, Member Relations and Awards, who will continue to oversee external-facing membership and awards initiatives and global outreach.

All Academy, Margaret Herrick Library, Academy Film Archive and Academy Museum staff will have access to newly created Employee Resource Groups (ERG) to foster diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace and beyond.

For more information please visit www.oscars.org

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