Ryan Coogler & Ava DuVernay To Attend Flint Benefit On Oscar Night
While a group of Hollywood’s elite, and non-diverse, figures are preparing up their best outfits for this year’s Academy Awards, Ryan Coogler and Ava DuVernay will use the night for an important cause. DuVerney and Coogler are among those attending an event benefitting the Flint, Mich. water crisis.
On Feb. 28, comedian Hannibal Buress, Creed director and co-writer Ryan Coogler, singer Janelle Monae, Grey’s Anatomy star Jesse Williams, Selma director Ava DuVernay, and other entertainment notables will be joining forces onstage for a free event in Flint, Michigan, BuzzFeed News can exclusively reveal. The Buress-hosted gathering, dubbed #JUSTICEFORFLINT, is open to the public and presented by Blackout for Human Rights, an activist collective founded by Coogler which is devoted to addressing human rights violations in the U.S.
For almost two years, Flint’s residents — many of whom are black and impoverished — have been subjected to massive lead and bacterial contamination in Genesee County’s water supply, and forced to avoid tap water.
#JUSTICEFORFLINT will take place at the Whiting Auditorium (1241 E. Kearsley St.) on Sunday, Feb. 28 at 5:30 p.m. ET to raise both awareness and funds for those affected by the water crisis. It will also be live-streamed via revolt.tv, and donations will be collected at the event and via text. Along with all the star power, organizers have also invited members of the Flint community to share their stories with the audience.
The #JUSTICEFORFLINT free event is the latest in a string of notable charitable efforts from celebrities. Diddy, The Game, Big Sean, Jimmy Fallon, and Madonna, have all opened their wallets and/or used their large social media followings to shed light on Michigan’s seemingly ignored public health crisis.
As for the date, it’s a total coincidence. The event will be held on that last weekend of Black History Month, and it just so happens that the Oscars fall on the very same day.