Since I published my own Oscars nominations at the end of December, I felt obliged to comment on the real nominations that came out earlier today. Especially since there’s been quite a few shocking (and very disappointing) choices. Why am I even surprised?
There has been only one truly amazing twist – and that is the nomination of Marion Cotillard for her role in Belgian drama Two Days, One Night. There has been almost no doubt about Jennifer Aniston getting nominated for her role in Cake (one of the most awful films I had the privilege of seeing lately), which is why I was completely (positively!) surprised about Academy’s decision to nominate Cotillard instead.
However, all the other surprises were nothing but disappointing. Outraging even.
Nominations for Best Actor? When the hell did Bradley Cooper enter the game? Every other nomination was expected – but Bradley Cooper getting nominated over Jake Gyllenhaal is just ridiculous. Or over Ralph Fiennes. Or David Oyelowo (his exclusion is probably the most infuriating) for his outstanding performance in Selma. Any other nomination would make more sense. But as it seems, Bradley is a new favourite of the Academy – much like Jennifer Lawrence, who also gets nominated for every crap movie that she does (with or without David O. Russell).
There were no surprise nominations for the Actor in a Supporting Role – although it wouldn’t really matter if there were, since it seems a pretty done deal that J. K. Simmons will win for his role in Whiplash. Also, no real surprises (except maybe Laura Dern’s nomination) among Actresses in a Supporting Role. Meryl Streep’s nomination for Into the Woods is beyond me though, but she obviously gets nominated for everything she does just for the fact that she’s Meryl Streep.
I don’t think I have to point out the problem that everyone nominated in the Best Leading and Supporting Actor/Actress category is white. Way to go, Hollywood. David Oyelowo was actually the only black actor who had a (however remote) chance of being nominated and this fact alone tells us pretty much everything about the limited opportunities and almost non-existing good roles for African-Americans and Latino minorities in Hollywood.
The nominations for Best Screenplays are, once again, boys club only. Gillian Flynn, who had every chance of being nominated for her brilliant adaptation of Gone Girl, wasn’t nominated. The same goes for Best Directors – there hasn’t been one female director nominated. Not even Ava DuVernay. I guess Selma was a bit too much for the (again, almost all white) Academy members who are selecting the nominees.
A Los Angeles Times study found that academy voters are markedly less diverse than the moviegoing public, and even more monolithic than many in the film industry may suspect. Oscar voters are nearly 94% Caucasian and 77% male, The Times found. Blacks are about 2% of the academy, and Latinos are less than 2%. They have a median age of 62 – people younger than 50 constitute just 14% of the membership. (Horn, Sperling and Smith)
It was amazing to see Ida getting nominated for best cinematography (it more than deserves the win!). However, I don’t understand how it’s possible for Selma’s cinematographer, Bradford Young, not getting nominated. He did an amazing job (the photography in the film is truly breathtaking) and not to mention that he would be the first black nominee ever in Best Cinematography category. The nomination for Cinematography is once again for white guys only (yes, there’s also no women nominated in this category, surprise surprise).
As for the editing, the Oscar should go to Whiplash or Boyhood. It’s very refreshing to see at least one woman being nominated here (and for Boyhood, nonetheless).
There you go. Rant concluded.
List of references:
- Horn, John, Nicole Sperling and Doug Smith. 2012. Unmasking the Academy: Oscar voters overwhelmingly white, male.