SPIKE LEE WILL SKIP THE OSCARS FOR KNICKS GAME








George Stephanopoulos interviewed actor, producer, and director Spike Lee on “Good Morning America”.


Director Spike Lee says that when Hollywood's biggest stars gather next month in California next month for the 88th Annual Academy Awards, he will be on the other side of the country at a basketball game.



"Feb. 28th, we’ll be at the world’s most famous arena, Madison Square Garden," Lee said today on "Good Morning America." "I'm going to a Knicks game."



Lee, a two-time Academy Award nominee, has spoken out about the lack of diversity among this year's Oscar nominees but he said his non-attendance should not be called a boycott.



"Here’s the thing. I have never used the word boycott," Lee said on "GMA." "All I said was my beautiful wife Tanya, we’re not coming. That’s it, and I gave the reasons. I never used the word boycott."



"It’s like do you," he said. "I’m not going. My wife’s not going. Everyone else can do what they want to do."



The Academy Awards have drawn fire in the past two years for not including minorities in the top award categories. This year, not one person of color was nominated for the coveted gold trophy in top categories such as Best Actor or Actress and Best Supporting Actor or Actress.



The lack of diversity among this year's nominees has sparked the social media hashtag #OscarsSoWhite.



Lee first put the spotlight on Hollywood’s diversity problem last November when he accepted an Honorary Oscar. In his acceptance speech, Lee decried the lack of diversity among Hollywood studio executives, saying, “It’s easier to be president of the United States as a black person than be head of a [movie] studio.”



The head of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences issued a statement Monday night to say she was "heartbroken" by the lack of diversity in this year's Oscar nominations and said she would conduct a review of membership recruitment in the coming days and weeks.



"I am both heartbroken and frustrated about the lack of inclusion," Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs said in the statement. "This is a difficult but important conversation, and it's time for big changes."



Actress Jada Pinkett Smith, who has joined Lee in saying she would boycott the Oscars in protest of the lack of diversity among nominees, issued a series of tweets thanking Boone Isaacs for her statement.



"I would like to express my gratitude to the Academy, specifically Cheryl Boone Isaacs, for such a quick response in regard to the issue at hand,"Pinkett Smith tweeted. "I look forward to the future."



Pinkett Smith, 44, is the wife of Will Smith, who had been considered an Oscar contender for his role in "Concussion."



This year’s Oscars ceremony is being hosted by Chris Rock. The comedian himself weighed in on the award show’s lack of diversity in nominations while tweeting a promo for the 88th Academy Awards.



Rock captioned the promo video with, “The #Oscars. The White BET Awards.”


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