Russell Simmons’ “Black Oscars”

Photo Credit: THZ Melanie Chima

Photo Credit: THZ Melanie Chima

Move over Oscars, there’s a new awards show in town. The entire night of the Oscars– Sunday, February 28th– Simmons will run and run and run his hour long “Black Oscars” aka “All Def Movie Awards” on Fusion TV. Amid protests that the Oscars lack diversity and #Oscarssowhite rages online, Russell Simmons is launching the first ever All Def Movie Awards this Wednesday. Simmons’ breakout entertainment and media programming platform, All Def Digital is hosting this awards show to serve as the unofficial Black Oscars. The awards categories include Best Picture and Best Actress as well as original categories such as Most Helpful White Person and Best Black Survivor. The live event will kick off at Hollywood’s Chinese Theatre (just a short walk from the Oscar’s Dolby Theatre) only four days before the 2016 Oscars.

“I don’t expect a 90-year-old Academy member to see ‘Straight Outta Compton’ or vote for it,” Simmons told Variety, “I’m more concerned that in 2016 there continues to be a stunning lack of diversity in the studios, in the green light process, in the decisions of what films and television series get made, and what actors get chosen. This needs to be addressed institutionally. The All Def Movie Awards are not the Black Oscars, but they could be. This will be a fun, entertaining and hopefully thought provoking celebration of the uncelebrated.”

Fusion will show reruns all night while the Oscars are on ABC, which is owned by Disney. Ironically, Disney co-owns Fusion with Univision. So you think this is a black and white thing? Nope, think not! It’s a GREEN thing! Either way, Disney makes money. Go figure!

The Awards show was created in a response to the lack of diversity in this year’s Oscar nominees and as an off-shoot of All Def’s weekly All Def Comedy show, hosted by Tony Rock in Los Angeles. Chris Rock is hosting this year’s Oscar Ceremony, while his brother will be taking the All Def stage to host the first ever All Def Movie Awards. All Def’s nominees include Straight Outta Compton, Concussion and Chi-rap. The ceremony will stream online on All Def’s website and Youtube channel beginning at 7pm Wednesday, but tickets for the event are invite-only.

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