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Oscars: Idris Elba, Emma Watson among 683 invited to help increase diversity

Following the #OscarsSoWhite controversy, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has invited almost 700 members of the movie and entertainment industry to join its ranks, in an effort to make the organization more ethnically and gender diverse.

Christopher Polk | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images

The organizers of the Oscars have issued a total of 683 invites to people within the industry, of which 46 percent of 2016's invitees are women, while 41 percent are people of color.

Brie Larson, John Boyega, Freida Pinto, Idris Elba, Kate Beckinsale, Sam Taylor-Johnson, Tina Fey, Tom Hiddleston, Emma Watson, Rachel McAdams, Oscar Isaac, Lana and Lilly Wachowski, Eva Mendes and Michael B. Jordan are just a handful of invitees who've been handpicked by the Academy.



Aside from actors, writers and directors; there are a whole host of talents that have been incorporated into the membership list this year, including executives, costume designers, make-up artists, musicians and cinematographers.

The move comes just months after the Academy announced an all-white acting Oscar nominee line-up for a second consecutive year. The Academy received severe criticism around the world and on social media; leading to the Academy's president Cheryl Boone Isaacs voicing that she was "heartbroken and frustrated about the lack of inclusion", and that it was time for "big changes".

Following the backlash, the organization voted unanimously to make significant changes to its organization and membership, pledging to double its number of female and minority members by 2020.

If all of those from the "Class of 2016" accept the invite, the Academy expects its female membership to increase from 25 percent to 27 percent, while people of color are expected to make up 11 percent of its overall voting body; highlighting that there's still further to go for the Academy to reach its 2020 goal.

"This class continues our long-term commitment to welcoming extraordinary talent reflective of those working in film today," Boone Isaacs said in a statement.

"We encourage the larger creative community to open its doors wider, and create opportunities for anyone interested in working in this incredible and storied industry."