The 2021 Emmys have done it again – tried to bring in more representation, but ended up giving all 12 lead awards to White people.
#EmmysSoWhite started trending soon after the 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards ended. With historic POC representation nominees – a record 44% – the awards went to white actors, igniting the backlash for the lack of inclusion.
Among the people of color who contended for major acting roles were Billy Porter and Mj Rodriguez for Pose, the late Michael K. Williams for Lovecraft Country, and Sterling K. Brown for This Is Us.
With all these incredible nominations, and a chance of making history, Emmys stuck to their tradition. Ted Lasso and The Crown cast swept up a significant chunk of the awards.
Even Saturday Night Live comedian Bowen Yang, a strong contender, lost to Brett Goldstein of Ted Lasso for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.
On the other hand, Michaela Coel for I May Destroy You and Cynthia Erivo lost to Kate Winslet for Lead Actress in a Limited Series.
People are labeling Emmys for their “performative diversity” and making a show out of POC actors.
One Twitter user summed up the Emmys 2021, saying, “All Black everything but winners,” taking a dig at the awards ceremony, as they included representation in almost everything – ad breaks, skits, hosts, announcer, and speeches about inclusion.
Others are also calling out on #EmmysSoWhite, stating that Emmys had a chance to create history with this year’s nominations but chose to look the other way.
Many of them also tuned in to see (hope) Emmys take a different turn, especially with almost half of the nominations being POC, but it again snubbed them of everything and turned out disappointing.
Due to the history of POC always being denied their worth, it wasn’t a complete surprise for some. A few people had already predicted that they might end up trending #EmmysSoWhite again. And lo and behold. That is exactly what happened.
This brings to light the works of Hollywood doing their absolute best not to include or acknowledge the ground-shaping works created by people of color.
Whitewashing award shows (Oscars too) has been a common phenomenon, but thankfully, people are not taking it as lightly as they did a decade ago.
The projects and people nominated for this year offered diverse cultures, communities, with their stories.
There’s no place for erasing POC’s hard work in 2021, and people are making sure the Hollywood industry knows it.