Huge, More Diverse Group Invited to Join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

PHOTO: Idris Elba attends the 45th NAACP Image Awards, Feb. 22, 2014. Rita Wilson attends the 69th Annual Tony Awards, June 7, 2015 in New York. Gabrielle Union attends the72nd Annual Golden Globe Awards Post-Party, Jan. 11, 2015, in Beverly Hills.PlayGetty Images
WATCH Academy Announces New Class of Diverse Members

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is delivering on its promise to diversify its membership.

Today the organization extended 683 membership invitations to actors, filmmakers and executives alike. Of that group, 41 percent are people of color and 46 percent are female.

According to the Academy's website, this means that the percentage of minorities has risen from 8 percent to 11 percent, and the percentage of women has grown from 25 percent to 27 percent.

The group runs the gamut age-wise too: The youngest person invited is 24, and the oldest is 91.

"This class continues our long-term commitment to welcoming extraordinary talent reflective of those working in film today," Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs said in a statement today. "We encourage the larger creative community to open its doors wider, and create opportunities for anyone interested in working in this incredible and storied industry."

Included in the list of potential new members are actors Idris Elba, Rita Wilson, Friedo Pinto, Gabrielle Union and Damon Wayans, Jr. O'Shea "Ice Cube" Jackson was invited in two categories, as was "Creed" director Ryan Coogler. Siblings Lana and Lilly Wachowski, who created the "Matrix" trilogy, also received invitations.

Back in January, Boone Isaacs announced the Academy's plan to overhaul its policies in an attempt to make its membership "significantly" more diverse. The plan, she said, was to double the number of women and minorities by 2020.

“The Academy is going to lead and not wait for the industry to catch up,” Boone Isaacs said earlier this year. “These new measures regarding governance and voting will have an immediate impact and begin the process of significantly changing our membership composition.”

The complete list of invitees can be found here.

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