Diversity 2020 at the Third Annual GRIOT Gala

Gia On The Move, GRIOT Gala, Oscars 2020, diversity, entertainment industry, Oscars After Party, Dear White People, Julia Stier, Cary Reynolds, Dr. Cheyenne Bryant

Contributed by Julia Stier, Photography by Cary Reynolds

There is no bigger night in Hollywood than Oscar Sunday when the best of the best are recognized for their contributions to filmmaking and storytelling. The night was full of historical moments, and ended with a standing ovation for the cast and crew of Parasite as they accepted the Oscar for “Best Picture.”

But even after the statuettes were handed out, the celebrations didn’t stop there.

Many stars headed to the GRIOT Gala Oscars After Party and Gia On The Move caught up with them on the event’s signature purple at Ocean Prime Beverly Hills.

This year marked the Third Annual GRIOT Gala, which centers on celebrating diversity and inclusion in the entertainment industry. The black-tie event honors the trailblazing men and women of color who have made significant contributions to filmmaking and the arts.

The Gala was hosted by actor and activist Michael K. Williams (The Wire, Boardwalk Empire, When They See Us), and honored the work of Peter Luo, Founder and CEO of Starlight Culture and Entertainment Group, and David Steward II, the CEO of Lion Forge Entertainment and Producer Hair Love – which took home the Oscar for “Best Animated Short Film.”

When asked what tonight’s event meant to him, Williams said, “Tonight’s about inclusion, diversity – although I didn’t see a lot of that tonight on the Oscars’ stage. For me personally, it’s about celebrating artists of all backgrounds.”

Actor Jeremy Tardy (Dear White People, 68 Whiskey, Ballers) said that what he was looking forward to most about the Gala was “being able to celebrate all the diversity, people of color in the industry out there working on amazing projects.”

Overall, many expressed their delight in wins for Parasite, and Best Supporting Actor wins for Brad Pitt and Laura Dern. The sense of camaraderie and respect between the actors, directors, and producers present at the Gala for the wins of their contemporaries was inspiring to witness and gave the night an overall feeling of triumph.

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