Arts & Entertainment

Academy Award Nominations Unsurprisingly Lack Diversity and Representation

Courtesy of Walt Disney Television

The 92nd Academy Award nominations were released Monday, with Todd Phillips’ “Joker” taking the lead with 11 nominations. Following suit with 10 nominations was “The Irishman,” “Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood” and “1917.”

All four were nominated for best picture along with “Little Women,” “Ford v Ferrari, “JoJo Rabbit,” “Marriage Story” and “Parasite.

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The nominations were unsurprisingly controversial, as viewers, film critics and celebrities alike recognized the lack of representation from women and people of color. 

“You don’t have to look further than the movies nominated for the most Oscars this year to realize how white boy centric Hollywood is,” Melissa Silverstein, founder of Women and Hollywood, wrote in a tweet.

The biggest controversy lies in the nominations for Best Director —  for the second year in a row, no women were recognized, despite being a big year for women creators. Those taking the nominations are Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino, Bong-Joon Ho, Sam Mendes and Todd Phillips, all of whose films were best picture nominees. 

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This comes as no surprise since no women were nominated for Best Director at the Golden Globes this year either.

Nominations for best actor and supporting actor consisted of big names including Leonardo DiCaprio (“Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood”), Joaquin Phoenix (“Joker”), Al Pacino (“The Irishman”) and Tom Hanks (“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”).

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Female nominations for Best Actress and Supporting Actress were not diverse. Actresses including Jennifer Lopez (“Hustlers”), Lupita Nyong’o (“Us”) and Awkwafina (“The Farewell”) were snubbed from the nomination. Awkwafina’s performance landed her a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Leading Role — becoming the first Asian American to win the award.

Saiorse Ronan (“Little Women”), Scarlett Johanson (“Marriage Story, JoJo Rabbit”) and Florence Pugh (“Little Women”) are some of those up for the accolades.

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The lack of diversity and representation isn’t surprising to most, as The Academy has struggled with this in the past. Of all the snubs, Greta Gerwig (“Little Women”) being passed over for Best Director has caused the most outcry. Despite the film being nominated in six other categories such as Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay, Gerwig was unable to secure a spot among the male directors in Hollywood. 

“I don’t know what you have to do around Hollywood to get a gal a directing Oscar nom, but it seems having a movie that is better than others nominated doesn’t seem to do the trick. Maybe if she were Greg Gerwig,” Twitter user A.N. Devers wrote.

Other honorable mentions that were snubbed for best director this award cycle are LuLu Wang for “The Farewell” and Marielle Heller for “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.”

Over the years, The Academy has failed to recognize women and people of color.

Gerwig’s absence from the Best Director category is disturbingly ironic, as her film highlights a woman’s place in a man’s world. These issues are still prominent today and are seen by the nominations from The Academy, where only five women have been nominated for best director in its history and only Kathryn Bigelow has won for “The Hurt Locker.”

In all of Oscar history, only five men of color — Sidney Poitier (“Lillies of the Field”), Denzel Washington (“Glory”), Jaime Foxx (“Ray”), Forest Whitaker (“The Last King of Scotland”) and José Ferrer (“Cyrano de Bergerac”) — have won Best Actor. Only one woman of color, Halle Berry (“Monster’s Ball”), has won Best Actress. 

This hasn’t gone unrecognized by the masses as the hashtag #OscarSoWhite was trending on Twitter following Monday’s announcement of the nominees. 

The Oscars will be held Feb. 9 and will be a hostless ceremony for the second year in a row.

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