Veteran actor William H. Macy–who was nominated for an Oscar in 1997–was not invited to this year’s Academy Awards, but said that he fully supports a boycott of the awards show over the racial diversity controversy.
Speaking to Us Weekly on Thursday at the Casting Society of America’s 31st Artios Awards in Beverly Hills, California, Macy said, “Good for them. Good for them,” when asked about celebrities who have pledged not to watch or attend the Oscars amid accusations that minority performers were intentionally snubbed.
“Talk about putting your money where your mouth is,” he added. “It’s not right. Someone’s gotta say it. They said it. I applaud them.”
In its announcement of this year’s nominees a week ago, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) stoked controversy again by revealing that all 20 Oscar nominations in the four coveted acting categories had gone exclusively to white actors for a second straight year.
The announcement of the all-white nominees has since resulted in numerous prominent entertainment figures vowing to boycott the star-studded Feb. 28 event and telecast.
Much like his industry peers, two-time Oscar nominee Will Sith and his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, three-time Oscar nominee and winner Spike Lee, Oscar winner Michael Moore, Snoop Dogg and Tyrese Gibson, Macy will be absent from the Oscars, although he reveals to the magazine it is for a different reason.
Despite his being nominated in 1997 for a Best Supporting Actor award for his role in 1996’s Fargo, Macy admits, “I wasn’t invited” to this year’s awards.
The actor’s comments come amid a firestorm that is surrounding the manner in which the Academy decides nominees.
Many stars, including the aforementioned boycotters, have now advocated for new measures to ensure more black actors participate in the awards process.
Actors David Oyelowo, six-time Oscar nominee and two-time winner George Clooney, Idris Elba, two-time Oscar nominee Viola Davis, Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o, two-time Oscar nominee Mark Ruffalo, and seven-time Oscar nominee and two-time winner Dustin Hoffman have also weighed in.
Hoffman said Thursday that “subliminal racism” was responsible for this year’s all-white Oscar nominees.
“In our country, there’s a subliminal racism, and it’s been there. The end of the Civil War didn’t change that — it’s only been 200 years. This is just an example of it,” he told BBC.
Hoffman added: “Other than black entertainers being nominated, there’s a bigger problem with young black individuals being killed on our streets by police. That’s a bigger problem.”
Meanwhile, two-time Oscar-winner Michael Caine and current Oscar nominee Charlotte Rampling both said separately on Friday that nominations should be based on merit and not race.
Calling the growing boycott racist to “whites,” Rampling told a French radio station, “One can never really know, but perhaps the black actors did not deserve to make the final list.”
Caine told BBC, “You can’t vote for an actor because he’s black. You can’t just say, ‘I’m going to vote for him. He’s not very good, but he’s black. I’ll vote for him.’ You have to give a good performance.”
In a statement earlier this week, AMPAS president Cheryl Boone Isaacs said she was “heartbroken” and “frustrated” by the lack of diversity among the acting nominees, and pledged her organization would make “big changes” in the near future.