Quincy Jones on Oscars’ Lack of Diversity: ‘It’s Ridiculous. It’s Wrong’

Quincy Jones
Willi Schneider/REX/Shutterstock

MIAMI — Quincy Jones has decried the lack of diversity in this year’s Oscar nominations and has vowed to address the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences’ board of governors on the issue.

Jones ranks as the first African-American to be appointed to the Academy’s board of governors. Speaking Wednesday at the National Association of Television Program Executives conference, Jones said he intends to speak to the AMPAS board about the situation next week.

“I’m going to ask the board to let me speak for five minutes on this lack of diversity,” he said. “We’ve got to find a solution. It’s been going on for too long.”

Jones stopped short of vowing to sit out the Feb. 28 ceremony as some prominent African-American industryites have done. “There’s two ways to (protest) it,” Jones said. “You can boycott it or you can solve it and fix it. It’s frightening to see (nominees) 90% white and 80% white males. It’s ridiculous. It’s wrong.”

Jones spoke Wednesday as part of a Q&A with producer Norman Lear conducted by Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos.

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  1. Dee Marrow says:

    Do not think boycott is solution. Especially for those struggling future generations of actors of color. Jada is wrong and appears selfish. I think all actors should show up and be seen, not be invisible, again. Be supportive and suck it up. Think of the future and talk to the Hollywood heads of studios about the movies being made. Personally, I am tired of never seeing people of color on camera shots at sports events, news, concerts, etc, etc.. People of color would like to be behind those cameras sometime. And personally I want to see children of color (black) on TV sometime even if it’s a parade! I think they are just as cute as white children always shown on TV. Thank you!

  2. Paul Bennett says:

    There is no diversity in the NFL or NBA just talent. Or you could look at it a different way & say there is racial discrimination. Or you could say there is diversity from the African American point of view. In Hollywood if you start implementing political correctness as the standard for diversity to run the show then movies will suffer & less attendance @ the box office will be the result. Did not Sidney Pointier & Quincy jones receive Academy Awards for In The Heat Of The Night in the 1960’s? And deservedly so!

  3. ls0822 says:

    They need to change the Damn Oscar Voting Panel Bottom Line, Put White, Black, Asian, Hispanic and see how the Voting will be done then. Instead of all White Male Hee Hawws.

  4. Frank says:

    You know what is ridiculous and wrong: this constant whining from the blacks about the lack of diversity, and their never ending sense of entitlement. You don’t like what’s going on at The Oscars? Do us all a favor – DON’T GO! No ones gives a damn if Quincy Jones, Jada Pinkett Smith, Whoopi Goldberg, and a talentless hack like Spike Lee, aren’t there. They won’t be missed! The Oscars are not another affirmative action program, and it’s ridiculous that we’re trying to turn them into one. The Oscars are about recognizing achievements in film making and the talent of performers, artists and crew people, not about meeting a race quota, like everything else seems to be.

  5. W Binghampton says:

    What is the accusation here? Is it that AMPAS members are bigots and nominate whites when their work is less worthy than that of African-Americans? Is it that AMPAS doesn’t encourage/require preferential nominations for minorities so that their “inferior” performances/work gets nominated by some type of affirmative action? Maybe, just maybe, AMPAS members based their nominations on their true assessment of the work they considered, without bias and based on merit, and the way that process worked, no African-Americans were nominated because they didn’t deserve it (as is true for all those whites not nominated). Until someone decides what (if any) slight was committed, orating on how to address whatever it is, is a fools errand.

  6. Robert Fox says:

    The sad thing is that Mr. Jones, Jada Pinkett Smith, Spike Lee and a few others have completely spoiled the Oscars for future black nominees and winners. Next year and in years to follow every time a black actor is honored for their work there will always be a nagging doubt in his/her mind that maybe the only reason for the honor is some kind of appeasement to the whining boycotting crybabies instead of a legitimate honor based on the work alone.

    • ls0822 says:

      @Robert Fox. they need to change the Damn Oscar Voting Panel Bottom Line, Put White, Black, Asian, Hispanic and see how the Voting will be done then. Instead of all White Male Hee Hawws.

  7. s says:

    where’s the equal outrage for BET awards, Miss Black USA pageant? Latin Grammy Awards? Enough. I propose an all black only Oscar awards night. Affirmative Action has now entered the Oscars. It’s about performances and voters. Ridiculous. When was the last time Spike Lee hired a white guy/gal on his production team? Look at all the black actors on TV shows, do we hear a boycott push from all the white actors?

  8. Lee says:

    Oh please. So they want a quota system wherein 2 slots on all acting categories be reserved for Blacks? The 5 best performances that make the cut should be it period. I personally wouldn’t want some token nomination knowing my performance only got the nod for diversity purposes, and that there were other performances they were deemed by the majority of voters to be better but had to be left out because the white quota has been filled.

    • LDavis says:

      There needs to be GOOD movies black or white or orange! If a movie isn’t good then it simply is not good! Black or white!!

  9. Jim says:

    I hope that Quincy gets his way. I cannot wait for “Ride Along 2”, “50 Shades of Black” and “Boo! A Madea Halloween” top battle it out for Best Picture.

    • green says:

      I can’t wait till driving miss daisy sound of music and all the other euro centric movies are regurgitated to the American public lol. Revenant and spotlight the other six crap. Only needed one black movie nominated NWA. Boxed 200 million only spent 20 million. These other catastrophes black and white movies cost 40 mill plus. These aren’t movies they are photography paced together. Stories are crap and euro. News flash being European does not make you worldly

      • Unknown says:

        Dude, you are dense beyond belief fool let alone a complete racist. Newsflash! Just because your black doesn’t make you entitled to anything. Calling “Spotlight”, “The Revenant”, “The Sound of Music”, & “Driving Miss Daisy” crap, blatantly shows you don’t have a clue or an ounce of adeptness about film or the craft of filmmaking. Also tool, Box-Office doesn’t equal quality. You are not a bright person.

    • Walter Sleeth says:


    • Tony says:

      Yeah…alongside SELMA, CONCUSSION and CREED.

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