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China-U.S. Summit: Cheryl Boone Isaacs Talks Oscars Diversity

A commitment to diversity was top of the agenda for Cheryl Boone Isaacs, president of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, at the China-U.S. Motion Picture Summit on Friday.

“The roll call of Academy members today is more like the United Nations than the founders of the Academy could ever have imagined,” she said in a keynote speech at Epoch City, outside Beijing. “That’s a wonderful, wonderful thing.”

She also spoke of “connecting the world through the wonder of cinema,” the Academy’s student fellowships, its role in setting technical standards and preserving film history.

The speech was chance for the AMPAS president to put behind her the caustic row about the Academy and race and this year’s Academy Awards which were labelled as #OscarsSoWhite.

In the past year Boone Isaacs has quietly been on a mission to extend the international profile and relevance of AMPAS. This is at least her third visit to Asia in the past six months, after visits to Busan in October and Singapore in December.

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