After a year that saw the entertainment industry soundly reject the Golden Globe Awards because its governing body, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, had no Black people among its 87 members, the HFPA announced Friday that it is admitting 21 new colleagues to its ranks, six of them Black.
Following a February expose in which the Los Angeles Times revealed the association’s lack of diversity, NBC dropped next year’s extravaganza from its lineup while Netflix, Amazon, and WarnerMedia cut ties with the HFPA and Tom Cruise sent back his collection of trophies.
The group has eased some of its membership criteria since, including a restriction that only Southern California-based journalists need apply, as well as eliminating its strict limit on how many newbies can join each year.
As The Hollywood Reporter notes the incoming class of 21—including 10 women—represents a 20 percent growth spurt for the Foreign Press gatekeepers, all of whom will have immediate Golden Globes voting rights, should that show ever go on.
Despite the new additions, however, the HFPA fell short of the promise it made in March to expand its membership so that at least 13 percent of its journalists are Black.
“We are thrilled to welcome these new members into our family,” HFPA president Helen Hoehne said in a statement. “We are building a new organization, one that is not focused on fulfilling quotas, but instead has diversity and inclusion at its core, has ethical conduct as the norm, and has people of color involved in every aspect of the Association—from membership to executive leadership. That is how we’re growing an inclusive environment, and for us to make this much progress in six months is a testament to our membership and our dedication to building something better.”
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