This magazine cover proves that even after this year, Hollywood still has a huge diversity problem
After all we’ve been through this year, and people are still not learning their lesson. The Los Angeles Times‘s Hollywood Awards and Industry Insider mag The Envelope recently came out with a cover that’s making us scratch our heads. In fact, there are two covers. One that stars actresses like Kate Winslet and Margot Robbie, and its counterpart cover that showcases actors like Hugh Jackman and James Franco. What these two covers have in common? They only feature white actors and actresses.
Look. It’s safe to say that Hollywood had a pretty intense year. The Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey scandals may have taken center stage (and for good reason), but they weren’t the only battles being fought in the world of cinema in 2017. Advocates for diversity spoke out loud and clear, exhaustively detailing the problems Hollywood has with representation. A host of minority-led movies received accolades, applause, and box office success. Artistically speaking, we witnessed a variety of wonderfully diverse films, roles, and creatives. So why are we still seeing magazines with monochromatic covers?
Considering all the lip service Hollywood likes to give diversity, it’s distressing how rarely that actually shows up. Perhaps no example of the disconnect between words and actions sums up the situation quite like the latest issues of The Los Angeles Times’s The Envelope. The cover story features some truly talented actresses and actors discussing Hollywood and the need for a wider range of voices in our media. Which makes it even more baffling as to why every single actress is white.
Twitter user Jumpedforjoi was the first to point this out, stating, “Actresses call of a change in the way many stories are told.” Looking at this cover is telling me otherwise though. But go off, I guess.” She later added the all-male cover, saying, “There’s a matching cover with men, you guys! And they still have the same problem.”
Writer Yolanda Machado also pointed out how problematic this cover was:
We love the actors and actresses featured on these covers; that’s not the issue. The problem with these LA Times covers — and indeed Hollywood as a whole — is that the leading voices are more often than not those of white men and women. If you’re going to discuss the need for more diversity in your stories, why not include Chadwick Boseman, Mindy Kaling, or Jordan Peele? There are countless talented and wonderful actors and actresses of color that could have appeared in these articles. The fact that they didn’t eloquently sums up Hollywood’s problem with diversity — and how far we still have to go.