Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Cheryl Boone Isaacs 
 Kevin Winter/Getty Images

After facing harsh criticism—and an upcoming boycott of the Academy Awards by Spike Lee, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith—for its all-white Oscar acting nominees for a second year in a row, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences plans to radically overhaul its voting and recruitment process in a bid to double by 2020 its female and diverse membership, according to Variety. The changes were announced Friday after an emergency meeting of the academy’s board on Thursday night.

“The academy is going to lead and not wait for the industry to catch up,” the academy’s president, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, said in a statement. “These new measures regarding governance and voting will have an immediate impact and begin the process of significantly changing our membership composition.”


One of the major changes will require that the voting status of new and current members be reviewed every 10 years. Voting status for those who haven’t been active in the film industry for a decade could be revoked. The academy will also be adding three more seats to its 51-person board; new board members will be nominated by the president.

Also, according to Variety, the academy met with Chris Rock’s reps to confirm that he will host the Feb. 28 ceremony. Some had called on Rock to boycott the ceremony, but although the comedian never addressed the issue, Variety reports that according to insiders, Rock said he would do more good by staying on as host. 

Read more at Variety.

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