It turns out, not so much … because as it turns out, The number of black actors winning Oscars is in line with the size of America’s overall black population.
For the 20 actors nominated for an Oscar all to be white could at best be seen as a surprise. For that to be true two years running is, to many, a scandal. They are calling it a “whitewash”. But if you take a closer look at the actual numbers, you’ll find that the number of black actors winning Oscars in this century has been pretty much in line with the size of America’s overall black population.
Now if you want to talk problems with racial bias, look at the Hispanic or Asian population.
Blacks are 12.6% of the American population, and 10% of Oscar nominations since 2000 have gone to black actors. But just 3% of nominations have gone to their Hispanic peers (16% of the population), 1% to those with Asian backgrounds, and 2% to those of other heritage.
Black actors get speaking roles in rough proportion to their percentage of America’s population, according to a study of 600 top films from 2007-2013 at the Annenberg Center for Communication and Journalism. But Latinos and Asians do much worse.
So is Hollywood really racist? Maybe not as much as some people would have us believe.