As the treatment of black media outlets in Hollywood gets more attention, Lil Rel Howery is taking a stand.
The actor and comedian broke ranks with other celebrities Saturday at the MTV Movie and TV Awards by speaking with reporters from the black press before doing interviews with mainstream media outlets, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“I want to start with the people who are actually supporting me, have supported me and will actually put the content out there,” Lil Rel, who is best known for his role in Get Out, told The Times Friday ahead of the awards.
The MTV Movie and TV Awards were taped in Santa Monica, Calif., and will air Monday night.
When the issue of racial inequity on the red carpet arose earlier this month at NABJ’s Black Male Media Project in Los Angeles, Lil Rel – who served as a panelist – vowed to do more to support the black press.
Actors, producers and directors customarily do interviews with mainstream media outlets and their mostly white reporters at red carpet events, but they rarely make it to the end of the line where black and Latino-owned outlets are almost always assigned.
Black-owned media outlets speak out about 'red carpet marginalization' in Hollywood https://t.co/6nUo0dg6Hu
— Urban Hollywood 411 (@UrbHollywood411) May 11, 2018
Last month Lee Bailey, founder of EURweb, told Urban Hollywood 411 that the black press has been treated like second-class citizens at movie premieres and award shows for far too long.
“As urban press, we’re pretty much relegated to the ghetto of red carpets, which means literally at the end of the line,” he said. “It’s like an analogy of having to ride in the back of the bus.”
It’s not just the Hollywood studios that are now being called out.
Newspapers, television outlets and websites that cover the movie business are also facing scrutiny for employing mostly white men as film critics.
A study released last Monday by the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative found that 77.8 percent of reviews were written by men, while female critics authored 22.2 percent of reviews.
Of the 19,559 reviews examined, 82 percent were written by white critics, while 18 percent were authored by people from underrepresented racial/ethnic backgrounds.