If the absurd brouhaha over the Oscars diversity guilt trip wasn’t enough, they changed their rules to appear to make things “more fair”. But in doing so took away the voting rights of a lot of actors who have been in the academy for decades. One of them is Bill Mumy, star of Lost in Space and a regular guest actor a ton of TV shows from the early sixties up through the nineties. Because he hasn’t been as active in recent years, largely because of another thing Hollywood is very guilty of, ageism, Bill has been kicked down to a level where he has no vote in the Oscars anymore.
In a open letter to the Academy he said:
I started working as an actor at the age of five in 1959. I made my debut in a major studio feature film when I was six. I worked prolifically in both features and television and was accepted into the prestigious voting ranks of the actors branch of the Academy in 1975.
Some of the producers, directors and fellow actors I’ve had the privilege of working for and with include: Walt Disney, Alfred Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg, Jimmy Stewart, Shirley Jones, Gene Kelly, Rod Serling, Lucille Ball, Steve McQueen, Dustin Hoffman, Stanley Kramer, John Cassavetes, Judy Garland, Martha Coolidge, Jack Palance, Burt Lancaster, Jack Klugman, Ed Wynn, Brigitte Bardot, Cloris Leachman, Claude Reins, Franklin Shafner, Irwin Allen… The list goes on and on and on. My point is: I learned my trade from Masters and I strongly feel that I’m still qualified to view films and share my opinions on them via an Academy ballot.
Sadly, the Academy no longer feels that is true.
Considering how many great performances he did through the years, included three classic Twilight Zone episodes and a host of others, it just goes to show that punishing innocent people because the system was unfair to others is just another form of injustice. This is the problem with divisive nonsense like the #OscarsSoWhite campaign. A recent study by The Economist show blacks actually get represented pretty well based on their population percentage. Latinos and Asians on the other hand are all but ignored.
Life isn’t fair and awards can’t go to everyone. We live in an age where a lot of children are given awards for just showing up. And now these adult children think they are entitled when an award is largely a popularity contest or political and is rarely based on real merit. The academy is making themselves look worse, not better, when they knuckle under to the whiners.
But isn’t that a sign of the times?