#OscarsSoWhite Protesters Gather Outside Academy Luncheon at Beverly Hilton

Rally attendees held signs featuring a stark white Oscar statue set against a black backdrop

A group of #OscarsSoWhite protesters gathered Monday outside the luncheon celebrating this year’s nominees, calling attention to the lack of diversity in all categories.

Roughly a dozen protesters could be seen holding signs featuring a stark white Oscar statue set against a black backdrop and the popular #OscarsSoWhite hashtag scrawled across the top in red.

Also noteworthy was the intense security presence at the Beverly Hilton, which resembled the manpower and redundant check-ins for the award ceremony itself.

Two auto checkpoints and a rigorous on-site credentialing process were in place for nominees, photographers and reporters — invoking machine-gun-toting guards like the ones in place for last month’s Golden Globes broadcast, also held at the Beverly Hilton.

Protesters frequent the annual Beverly Hilton Hotel event for various causes, but the presence of diversity advocates comes after the Academy has announced efforts to address concerns about its membership, which skews overwhelmingly white and male.

Najee Ali, director of Project Islamic Hope, had called for the protest on Monday, and civil rights leaders like the Rev. Al Sharpton have called for a boycott of the Feb. 29 Oscar ceremony.

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