Eva Longoria is asking Oscar attendees this Sunday to wear brown ribbons to point out the lack of Latino representation in Hollywood.
“I can’t wait for the day when 'diversity' isn’t just the hot topic of the moment, but a true reality that is reflected on screen,” the actress and producer said in a news release for the Brown Ribbon Campaign, which is promoting the hashtags #BrownRibbonCampaign and #HollywoodBrownout.
Though Latinos are about 17 percent of the U.S. population -- and 32 percent of regular moviegoers -- they make up only 4.9 percent of speaking roles in movies by major studios, according to an analysis from the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. And anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock for the past few decades knows there aren’t many big Latino-centric movies. In fact, even when movies are about real Latinos, or other people of color, studios often go ahead and just cast white people anyway.
And the problem isn't just onscreen. A Columbia University study of the 10 highest-grossing movies domestically between 2010 and 2013 found that Latinos made up only 6 percent of writers, 2.3 percent of directors and 2.2 percent of producers.
While lack of diversity in Hollywood has been getting a lot of attention recently with the #OscarsSoWhite movement, the Brown Ribbon Campaign is an effort to make people realize that the issue is more comprehensive than white versus black.
The National Hispanic Media Coalition promoted the campaign at their Impact Awards Gala, which honors positive media portrayals of Latinos, on Friday.
"The issue of diversity in entertainment can no longer be a black--white dialogue," Alex Nogales, president of the NHMC, said in a statement. "It has to include Latinos, Asian-Americans, Native Americans, and women. Every community has its creatives and we gather at the Impact Awards to honor ours and inspire more.”