Stephen King apparently doesn’t believe diversity should override art.
The horror author weighed in Tuesday on the lack of diversity in this year’s Oscar nominations.
King, who has had several of his novels and short stories adapted into films, is an Academy member.
“As a writer, I am allowed to nominate in just 3 categories: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Original Screenplay,” King tweeted. “For me, the diversity issue–as it applies to individual actors and directors, anyway–did not come up.”
“That said…,” he continued. “…I would never consider diversity in matters of art. Only quality. It seems to me that to do otherwise would be wrong.”
That didn’t go over well, especially with director Ava DuVernay, who has championed inclusion in Hollywood.
She retweeted King’s thoughts and added her own commentary.
“When you wake up, meditate, stretch, reach for your phone to check on the world and see a tweet from someone you admire that is so backward and ignorant you want to go back to bed,” DuVernay tweeted.
King came back a few hours after his initial tweets with further thoughts.
“The most important thing we can do as artists and creative people is make sure everyone has the same fair shot, regardless of sex, color, or orientation,” he tweeted. “Right now such people are badly under-represented, and not only in the arts. You can’t win awards if you’re shut out of the game.”