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History-making Oscar nominations

Ramya Kumar, Arts and Entertainment Editor

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On January 23, 2018, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences released its list of Academy Award nominees of 2018. The Academy award is considered the highest honor a film can receive. Since the first Academy Awards in 1929, the most talented films, actresses, actors, directors, writers, composers, set designers and filmmakers in all of Hollywood have received the highly coveted Oscars. Throughout the 88 years Academy Awards have been distributed, a vast majority of the winners have been white and male. In 2002, just 16 years ago, Halle Berry became the first Black woman to win an Oscar for Best Actress.  The first woman to ever win an Oscar for best director was Kathryn Bigelow for the “The Hurt Locker” in 2010.

 

The lack of representation in Hollywood is highly noteworthy. With greater representation of various racial, gender, sexual, and economic identities come the normalization of diversity. Children who are represented can see themselves in heroic fictional characters, and idolize them; Through the plethora of cisgender, heterosexual, white men who have been superheroes, white men have always had a great deal of representation in their lives. Over the years, the entertainment industry has made strides towards diversifying itself; a great surge in representation has occurred over the past decade. The 2018 Oscar Nominations are no exception to this trend. Greta Gerwig became the fifth female to ever be nominated for best director for “Ladybird”. Dee Reese became the first black woman to be nominated for best adapted screenplay for “Mudbound”. Mary J. Blige became the first person to ever be nominated for best supporting actress and best song.  Jordan Peele became the first black man to receive nominations for best picture, best screenplay, and best director for “Get Out”. Kumail Nanjiani became the first Pakistani-American to be nominated for best original screenplay for “The Big Sick”.

 

Although, thanks to the aforementioned ground-breaking artists there are new spaces for people of color and women to enter the entertainment industry and freely create their art, there is still a great deal of progress to make towards bringing equal representation to every demographic in the United States.

The 2018 Oscar Nominees are provided by Variety Magazine.

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History-making Oscar nominations