In a move that was waiting to happen, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences made certain that disgraced comedian Bill Cosby and filmmaker Roman Polanski are no longer members of Hollywood’s most important organization. The AMPA is the group behind the Academy Awards and the decision was made based on the organisation’s conduct standards.
"The Board continues to encourage ethical standards that require members to uphold the Academy's values of respect for human dignity," a statement from the Academy read. Bill Cosby was last week convicted on three incidents of sexual assault, while Polanski fled the US in 1978 after being charged with the rape of a 13-year-old girl.
Cosby was a member of the Academy for a long time for his work in various films, though he was mostly associated with television. However, he never won an Oscar. Polanski, on the other hand, continued his work with filmmaking, in Europe. The director won an Oscar in 2003 for The Pianist, a World War II drama.
Cosby and Polanski are not the first ones to be removed from the Academy membership. Last year in October, producer Harvey Weinstein was expelled after allegations of sexual assault surfaced against him. Over the years, the Academy has been slammed by many in Hollywood for not taking action against Polanski.According to a report on Vanity Fair, Polanski will appeal to the Academy’s decision to expel him.