Ava DuVernay, Ryan Coogler Will be Part of Live Benefit Opposite Oscars

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Ava DuVernay and Ryan Coogler.

"The poisoning that is happening in Flint is one of the most egregious human rights violations in American history," says the 'Selma' director.

Hollywood directors Ava DuVernay and Ryan Coogler will be featured in a free live benefit that will take place during the Oscars on Sunday night. 

The event, called #JUSTICEFORFLINT, will be hosted by comedian Hannibal Buress and will be live-streamed from Flint, Mich., according to a statement from organizers on Tuesday. 

#JUSTICEFORFLINT is presented by Blackout for Human Rights, which was founded by Coogler and DuVernay to confront human rights violations in the U.S.; the water contamination crisis in Flint being an example.

"With the #JUSTICEFORFLINT benefit event we will give a voice to the members of the community who were the victims of the choices of people in power who are paid to protect them, as well as provide them with a night of entertainment, unity and emotional healing," Creed helmer Coogler said in a statement. Through the livestream we will also give a chance for people around the world to participate, and to donate funds to programs for Flint's youth."

The event also will feature Grey’s Anatomy star Jesse Williams, Empire star Jussie Smollett and singer Janelle Monae, among numerous other appearances and performances, according to organizers.

"The poisoning that is happening in Flint is one of the most egregious human rights violations in American history," Selma director DuVernay said in a statement. "Blackout for Human Rights stands with all those affected by the water crisis, and is committed to supporting efforts on the ground to find sustainable, long-term solutions and, most importantly, achieve justice for the people of Flint."

The event will take place at the same time as the Academy Awards. For the second year in a row, no non-white actors were nominated for an Oscar. Coogler was also snubbed for Creed. Last year, DuVernay was snubbed for Selma

Neither Coogler nor DuVernay returned a request for additional comment. 

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