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Charlotte Rampling: It’s ‘Racist To Whites’ To Discuss Oscar’s Lack Of Diversity

Charlotte Rampling, an English actor known for playing Evelyn Vogel in TV’s Dexter and as a film icon of the Swinging Sixties, went on France’s Europe 1 radio station to discuss the lack of diversity in this year’s Oscar acting nominations — particularly, how she thinks it’s no big deal, and, if anything, drawing attention to it is “racist to whites.”

“One can never really know, but perhaps the black actors did not deserve to make the final list,” added Rampling, who was nominated in the best actress category for her role in 45 Years, a movie about a rich white couple experiencing marital troubles.

Rampling went on to say she thinks any sort of quota system to encourage diversity within nominees would be ill-thought, because “these days everyone is more or less accepted.”

“Why classify people?” she asked. “People will always say ‘Him, he’s not as handsome’ or ‘Him, he’s too black’ or ‘He’s too white.’ But does that necessarily mean there should be lots of minorities everywhere? What does it mean that [black actors] still think that they’re a minority?”

I guess Rampling’s right in the sense that there would have to be at least one single black actor nominated for them to “think they’re a minority.” Right now, statistically at least, black actors can’t really even be sure that they exist.


Michael Caine spoke to a BBC radio program and advised black actors to “be patient.” “There’s loads of black actors,” he said. “In the end you can’t vote for an actor because he’s black. You can’t 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 and I’m sure people have. Of course it will come. It took me years to get an Oscar, years.”

(There’s at least one black actress who might agree with Rampling and Caine.)


Charlotte Rampling: It’s ‘Racist To Whites’ To Discuss Oscar’s Lack Of Diversity

One reply on “Charlotte Rampling: It’s ‘Racist To Whites’ To Discuss Oscar’s Lack Of Diversity”

I call this the Trump Effect: People actually speaking their minds. Of course, I have been doing the same since the get go, so it’s not a complaint so much as an observation.

As for the question, yes, all quota systems are racist. Any system that biases opportunities based on race is racist. Quotas are not ‘equal opportunity’. A lot of things that are supposed to encourage diversity and given positive sounding names is basically racism, in the same way that Special Olympics is biased and exclusionary and Women’s Tennis or Under 15 Soccer or Whites Only Basketball is bollocks.

The fundamental problem in this case is not that black people aren’t getting Oscars, but there are fewer good roles for black people. There are fewer roles for black people because paying audiences are less drawn to black characters; they are less marketable. They are less marketable because nobody aspires to be black. Even black people don’t aspire to be black. Black people (in America) have responded poorly to this and exaggerate their poverty to seem cool amongst their peers. Everytime a black teen flashes a gang sign in a photo, he’s perpetuating a racist stereotype. The Oscars should be about merit not about fixing society. If black people want more votes, more black people need to get into acting and join the academy. Yes, there are still few jobs, but acting is about dreams and sacrifice, not just fame and fortune.

Suck it up, black people.

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