The Cheers alum, 69, took to Twitter on Tuesday, September 8, to express her dissatisfaction with the new requirements. “This is a disgrace to artists everywhere … can you imagine telling Picasso what had to be in his f–king paintings,” she wrote in a since-deleted tweet. “You people have lost your minds. Control artists, control individual thought .. OSCAR ORWELL.”
Alley’s Twitter declaration attracted a reply from acclaimed filmmaker Ava DuVernay, who shared a GIF of Denzel Washington slamming a door in someone’s face. The It Takes Two actress replied with the rolling on the floor laughing emoji and asked that the 48-year-old When They See Us creator “explore” her record of inclusion throughout her career.
“I’m not perfect but have fought for human & civil rights for 50 years,” she continued. “I just don’t agree [with] mandated, impossible to ‘police’ quotas as a prerequisite 4 a ‘best’ picture.”
Alley later addressed her decision to pull her initial tweet denouncing The Academy’s decision. “I deleted my first tweet about the new rules for best movie OSCARS because I feel it was a poor analogy & misrepresented my viewpoint,” she explained on Wednesday, September 9. “I am 100% behind diversity inclusion & tolerance.”
The Drop Dead Gorgeous star added, “I’m opposed to MANDATED ARBITRARY percentages relating to hiring human beings in any business.”
On Tuesday, The Academy announced that films competing within the best picture category must meet certain diversity and inclusion requirements to be eligible for the coveted prize. The new regulation is slated to begin in 2024.
“The aperture must widen to reflect our diverse global population in both the creation of motion pictures and in the audiences who connect with them. The Academy is committed to playing a vital role in helping make this a reality,” Academy President David Rubin and Academy CEO Dawn Hudson said in a press release. “We believe these inclusion standards will be a catalyst for long-lasting, essential change in our industry.”
In February, the best picture prize went to Parasite — a film that hailed from South Korean filmmaker Bong Joon-ho. The acclaimed black comedy, which featured an all Asian cast and Korean dialogue, became the first non-English language film to win within the top category.
When Oscars nominations were unveiled in recent years, many opposers took to Twitter to slam the prestigious event using the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag. The movement called out The Academy over its failure to recognize more diverse choices.