In an effort to push for diversity, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has invited a record number of 928 new members, topping last year’s record of 774 new members and making the 2018 class the largest in history.
A large number of Asian film personalities have been invited to join the rank, some of the notable ones include Hong Kong actor Andy Lau, Chinese-Japanese actor Takeshi Kaneshiro, Taiwanese actress and director Sylvia Chang, and Bollywood giants Shah Rukh Khan, Anil Kapoor, Madhura Dixit, and more.
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Growing up, watching the Oscars was like watching the World Cup, it was something that happened in a far-off land to people who seemed larger than life. So thank you @theacademy today and all you incredible people I have worked with over the years for the honor #uknowwhouare
Singaporean actor Chin Han and documentary filmmaker Tan Pin Pin were also among the invitees who will be part of The Academy’s drive for diversity.
The invitations were issued to 59 different countries. 38 percent of them are people of colour while 49 percent are female.
Meanwhile, the most recognisable names from Hollywood invited into the fold include Tiffany Haddish, Dave Chappelle, Mindy Kaling, Amy Schumer, Kumail Nanjiani, Wendell Pierce, Gina Rodriguez, Sarah Silverman, J.K. Rowling, Kendrick Lamar, Questlove and Jada Pinkett Smith.
Hey yo. I’m in The Academy. https://t.co/CACVvdK5ry
— Kumail Nanjiani (@kumailn) June 25, 2018
In the past, The Academy has been criticised for its overwhelmingly white male membership, thus spawning the #OscarsSoWhite and #MeToo movements. So this year marks The Academy’s largest and most diverse class ever.