Black Actors Sign Letter Demanding Hollywood Executives to Address Racism
Over 300 Black artists and executives signed an open letter demanding systemic change in Hollywood when it comes to racism, discrimination, and representation.
The letter, “Hollywood 4 Black Lives,” was spearheaded by actor and activist Kendrick Sampson as part of his BLD PWR initiative.
Viola Davis, Janelle Monáe, Michael B. Jordan, Billy Porter, and many more joined his call for the entertainment industry to “prove that Black Lives Matter to Hollywood by taking bold moves to affirm, defend and invest in Black lives.”
“Hollywood has a privilege as a creative industry to imagine and create. We have significant influence over culture and politics. We have the ability to use our influence to imagine and create a better world,” the letter said. “Yet, historically and currently, Hollywood encourages the epidemic of police violence and culture of anti-Blackness.”
The letter continued, “The lack of a true commitment to inclusion and institutional support has only reinforced Hollywood’s legacy of white supremacy. This is not only in storytelling. It is cultural and systemic in Hollywood. Our agencies, which often serve as industry gatekeepers, don’t recruit, retain or support Black agents. Our unions don’t consider or defend our specific, intersectional struggles. Unions are even worse for our below-the-line crew, especially for Black women. Hollywood studios and production companies that exploit and profit from our stories rarely have any senior-level Black executives with greenlighting power.”
Read the full letter HERE.