This year's Oscar nominations announcement brought with it yet another wave of trending for the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag as fans called out the Academy for shutting out people of color from most of the big categories.
And while buzz about the Oscars' serious diversity problem died down a bit leading up to the Sunday, Feb. 9, telecast, plenty of industry A-listers remain frustrated. Comedian Leslie Jones is one of them.
"Welp I just finished voting for the Oscars. It didn't take long cause there are no black people on it," she tweeted. "So I voted for @CynthiaEriVo and abstained from the rest of the voting. #moreblackpeopleplease."
"Harriet" star Cynthia Erivo is the only person of color nominated in an acting category this year, according to People. Variety previously pointed out that with only five black nominees in any category, the Oscars have officially hit a "three-year low" point, diversity-wise.
Nominated for best actress and best original song, Cynthia is joined by fellow black nominee Matthew A. Cherry, whose short film "Hair Love" became a point of contention in the comments under Leslie's post, many of which derided her for seeming to have missed the chance to vote for Matthew. Others complained she should have supported Latinx, Asian and other minority stars and filmmakers, according to People.
(Leslie replied at one point, "Ok geeeez yes I voted for @MatthewACherry tooo didn't think I needed to say that!")
Still, the options were extremely limited. Erivo's "Harriet" song co-writer, Joshuah Brian Campbell, Karen Rupert Toliver, who produced "Hair Love," and the Mali-born director of "Les Misérables," Ladj Ly, are the only other black nominees for 2020.
Speaking to Variety at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, Cynthia said, "It feels a bit like I've got a responsibility to represent all the people of color who have done incredible work this year."
She added: "I want hopefully for this to serve as an example as to why we need to start celebrating people of color as well — really paying attention to how we vote for them and how we vote for the people who are nominated. We need to see some changes."
A similar sentiment has been repeated each year during awards season since at least 2015, when the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag first trended. '
In 2015, the Academy nominated zero actors of color. Leslie was actually invited to become a member of the Academy's voting body this year as part of a push to diversify the voting ranks by adding 683 new members, more than the organization has ever invited in one year in the past.
The Oscars air on Sunday at 8 p.m. on ABC.