Film academy repsonds to backlash over all-white acting Oscar nominations

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences responded to a backlash over a second-straight year of all-white acting nominations.

Film academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs says that despite the organization's internal efforts toward inclusion, a second year of all-white acting Oscar nominees made her think, "We need to step this up."

The organization said it’s making radical changes to its voting requirements and its governing structure to encourage more diversity.

This comes in response to a fierce protest on social media against the Oscar nominations, which excluded several people of color this year including Will Smith the star of the film “concussion” and the entire cast of “Straight Outta Compton”, which was also shut out of the best film category.

Boone Isaacs announced Friday that the academy will double the number of female and minority members by 2020, and will immediately diversify its leadership by adding three new seats to its board of governors, to be filled in the coming weeks.  It also plans to review the status of current members every 10 years.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' 51-member board of governors unanimously approved a series of reforms late Thursday to "begin the process of significantly changing our membership composition," Boone Isaacs said, following a week-long storm of criticism and calls for an Oscar boycott because of the lack of diversity among nominees.

Jada Pinkett Smith, who is married to Will Smith, announced she would boycott this year’s Oscars over the controversy.