Stephen King Responds to Backlash After Revealing He Doesn’t Consider Diversity When Voting For Oscars

Blogged by @kashtaughtme

A tweet sent out by creative genius and writer #StephenKing on January 14th sparked quite a bit of backlash.

The “Pet Sematary” author took to Twitter to discuss not considering diversity when nominating films and writers for Oscars.

“As a writer, I am allowed to nominate in just 3 categories: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Original Screenplay. For me, the diversity issue—as it applies to individual actors and directors, anyway—did not come up,” King stated. “That said, I would never consider diversity in matters of art. Only quality. It seems to me that to do otherwise would be wrong,” tweeted the writer. As you can imagine, King’s statement triggered an overwhelmingly controversial reaction, including a statement from well-known filmmaker, #AvaDuvernay.

“When you wake up, meditate, stretch, reach for your phone to check on the world and see a tweet from someone you admire that is so backward and ignorant you want to go back to bed,” wrote the #WhenTheySeeUs director and co-writer.

The unexpected and overwhelming response prompted the author to respond today in a new Washington Post op-ed titled “The Oscars Are Still Rigged In Favor of White People.”

He admitted that he unknowingly crossed the line with his tweet, and issued what appeared to be an apology followed by his perspective.

“I did not say that was the case today because nothing could be further from the truth. Nor did I say that films, novels, plays, and music focusing on diversity and/or inequality cannot be works of creative genius. They can be, and often are. Ava DuVernay’s 2019 Netflix miniseries, When They See Us, about the wrongful convictions of the Central Park Five, is a splendid case in point,” wrote Stephen.

He concluded by writing, “We don’t live in that perfect world, and this year’s less-than-diverse Academy Awards nominations once more prove it. Maybe someday, we will. I can dream, can’t I? After all, I make stuff up for a living.”

Stephen King Reacts To Backlash

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