Academy welcomes 842 new members, half of them women

This combination photo shows, top row from left, Sterling K. Brown, Letitia Wright, Lady Gaga, and bottom row from left, Claire Foy, Tom Holland and singer Adele, who are among 842 people invited to join the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences on Monday, July 1, 2019. (AP Photo)

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has invited 842 new members to the Oscars organization, half of them women

NEW YORK — The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences on Monday invited 842 members from 59 countries to the Oscars organization and, for the first time, reached gender parity in its new class of inductees.

Half of the new invitees to the film academy are women. In 10 of the 17 branches — including the directing, writing and producing branches — more women than men were invited. This year's class of new members also includes 29% people of color.

That's a notable turnaround for an organization that has sought to diversity its ranks following criticism for all-white acting nominees in 2015 and 2016. Since 2015, the group's overall female membership has grown from 25% to 32%, the academy said. Overall membership of people of color has doubled, from 8% to 16%.

To aid in the swift overhaul of the academy, the group last year invited a record 928 members. While smaller, this year's class still ranks as one of the academy's largest in its 92-year history.

New invitees include Lady Gaga, Sterling K. Brown, Claire Foy, Letitia Wright, Tom Holland and Adele. Newly invited directors include "Crazy Rich Asians" filmmaker Jon Chu, "The Babadook" director Jennifer Kent and the filmmaking duo of Phil Lord and Chris Miller.

If most accept their invites, the film academy will number more than 9,000 members.

Next year's Academy Awards will be held on Feb. 9, several weeks earlier than usual.

You may also like these

Nephew in 'Making a Murderer' has conviction...

Aug 13, 2016

A judge has overturned the conviction of a Wisconsin man found guilty of helping his uncle kill a...

Kenny Baker, who played R2-D2 in 'Star Wars,'...

Aug 13, 2016

Kenny Baker, the 3-foot 8-inch (1.1 meter) actor who played R2-D2 in the "Star Wars" films, has died

'Mr. Robot' mobile game launches as phony...

Aug 17, 2016

A fake messaging app inspired by the USA Network hacker 'Mr. Robot' was released Tuesday for mobile...

Critics: UK plan to cut child obesity lacks muscle

Aug 18, 2016

Britain unveiled a plan Thursday to battle rising child obesity by taxing sodas, urging food...

Judge to Ex-NFL star: Can't ignore the damage you...

Aug 18, 2016

Former NFL star Darren Sharper is sentenced to more than 18 years in prison for drugging women in...

Sign up now!