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This Year’s Record-Breaking Oscar Nominations

diversity in oscar nominations
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On Mar. 15, the long-anticipated Oscars nominations were announced for the upcoming 93rd ceremony. In Jan. 2015, #OscarssoWhite began to trend on Twitter in response to the lack of diversity – especially in the 87th and 88th nominations, which only had all-white acting nominees. And in 2020, only one Black actor was nominated. This year, the nominations were more diverse.

Here are some of the record-breaking nominations this year:

  • The best actor category is not mostly white. 
  • “Minari” Steven Yeun is the first Asian-American nominated for best actor.
  • “Sound of Metal” lead Riz Ahmed is the first Muslim and person of Pakistani descent nominated for best actor.
  • “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” lead Chadwick Boseman is the first actor of color to earn a posthumous Oscar nomination.
  • “Minari” Youn Yuh-Jung is the first South Korean actor nominated for an acting Oscar. She was nominated for best supporting actress.
  • “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” lead Viola Davis is the most-nominated Black actress and the only Black woman with two best actress nominations
  • More than one woman was nominated for best director.
  • “Nomadland” Chloé Zhao is the first woman of color nominated for best director.
  • Zhao is also the first woman to receive four nominations in a year. If she wins them all, she will be tied with Walt Disney, the only person to have won four Oscars in one night.
  • “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” team members Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson are the first Black women nominated for best makeup and hairstyling.
  • “Judas and the Black Messiah” is the first movie nominated for best picture with an all-Black producing team: Shaka King, Charles D. King and Ryan Coogler.
  • “Minari” producer Christina Oh is the first Asian-American woman to receive a nomination for best picture.
  • “The Mole Agent” is the first Chilean film to be nominated for a documentary feature. 
  • “The Mole Agent” Maite Alberdi and Marcela Santibáñez are the first Chilean women to be nominated for an Oscar.
  • “Judas and the Black Messiah” has 10 nominations, breaking “The Color Purple” record for most Black nominees from a single film.

Some nominees went to Twitter to talk about their notable nomination(s.) 

Best Picture?

Although more nominations include more women and/or people of color, the nominations are much less diverse in non-acting nominations, as in the best picture nominees. “Da 5 Bloods,” “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” and “One Night in Miami” all have primarily Black casts and are nominated in other categories. But they did not get the best picture nomination, the most prestigious category. Additionally, there is still a lack of diversity regarding those living with mental or physical disabilities and/or being in the LGBTQIA+ community. 

To take a look at some of the past nominations, check this out.

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