Nicole Barber (Scarlett Johansson) looks shocked in Marriage Story (2019)

Scarlett Johansson is one of the most recognizable actors in the world, having been a fixture in film and television since she was a child. Over time, she’s also become a voice within the industry, speaking out on issues affecting both the entertainment landscape and society as a whole. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association has been a particularly hot topic as of late, as the organization has received backlash for a number of reasons. Now, Johansson is lending her voice to the many who are calling for reform with the HFPA by bluntly revealing why she's avoiding doing Golden Globes press for years

In the midst of the backlash facing the HFPA, Scarlett Johansson has shed some light on her own experiences with the organization. The actress released a statement (via The Los Angeles Times) in which she claims to have faced “sexist questions and remarks” while promoting films:

As an actor promoting a film, one is expected to participate in awards season by attending press conferences as well as awards shows. In the past, this has often meant facing sexist questions and remarks by certain HFPA members that bordered on sexual harassment. It is the exact reason why I, for many years, refused to participate in their conferences.

Over the years, Scarlett Johansson has been honored by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association a number of times. To date, the actress has been nominated for five Golden Globes, which means Johansson has avoided promoting her work for some time now.

Calls for diversity within the Hollywood landscape have only increased over the past few years, and the HFPA is among the organizations that has been taken to task for not implementing progressive changes. Ahead of this year’s Golden Globes ceremony, a lengthy investigation reported allegations of ethical and financial improperties. The report also found that the 86-member group has no Black members at this time.

Specific members of the group have also come under fire, such as former HFPA President Philip Berk, who was once accused of groping Brendan Fraser. Just recently, after four decades of membership, Berk was dismissed from the group after emailing members an article that described Black Lives Matter as a “racist hate movement.”

In light of the criticism, the HFPA is reportedly looking to institute a number of changes. One of these is an inclusion and overhaul proposal put forward by the group’s board and voted upon by 75 of the organization’s members.

With the way things are going, it’s fair to assume the calls for reform within the HFPA are only going to increase as time goes on. How the organization makes changes remains to be seen, but it’s clear that it’s becoming harder for the group to ignore the noise.

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