×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Women Shunned by Oscars as Men Make Up 80% of Nominees (Study)

A debate about diversity has roiled the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the group that hands out the Oscars every year. For two straight years, the awards body was slammed for failing to nominate minorities in the major acting categories. When nominations were announced last week, however, it seemed like this year’s crop of honorees were a more inclusive bunch. Seven out of the 20 acting nominees were people of color, tying a record set in 2007. It was a group that included Octavia Spencer, Denzel Washington, and Viola Davis, with the best picture nominees boasting three films — “Moonlight,” “Hidden Figures,” and “Fences” — that deal with the subject of race.

That kind of progress didn’t extend to women in non-acting categories. The number of female Oscar nominees dropped two percentage points, according to an analysis by the Women’s Media Center. No female directors were nominated and only one female screenwriter, Allison Schroeder, was recognized for her work — co-authoring the “Hidden Figures” script. In total, 80% of all non-acting nominees across 19 categories were men, and some major categories, such as cinematography and original screenplay, contained no female honorees.

Historically, the Academy’s track record is a spotty one. From 2005 to 2016, women accounted for just 19% of all non-acting Oscar nominations, the group found.

The Women’s Media Center is a nonprofit organization founded by actress Jane Fonda, writer Robin Morgan, and political activist Gloria Steinem with the goal of improving the representation of and opportunities for women in media. Its findings come on the heels of a report this month by the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film that found that women comprised just 7% of all directors working on the 250 highest-grossing domestic releases last year. That represented a decline of two percentage points from 2015. The report also found that women made up only 17% of all directors, writers, producers, executive producers, editors, and cinematographers working on the highest grossing films of 2016. The Women’s Media Center drew a line between that lack of representation in the industry and the paucity of female nominees.

“Clearly, women cannot get through the door and if they cannot get through the door, they cannot be recognized — and rewarded — for their excellence and impact,” said Julie Burton, president of the Women’s Media Center, in a statement.

When it comes to the Oscars, there were a few signs of improvement. Nine women were nominated as producers in the best picture category, the most nominations for women in any category, and Ava DuVernay directed “13th,” a look at the mass incarceration of African Americans, to a best documentary nomination. Other breakthroughs included Mica Levi, who became the first woman nominated for original score in 16 years with “Jackie,” and Joi McMillan, who became the first African American woman ever nominated in editing for her work on “Moonlight.”

More Film

  • Black Panther

    'Black Panther,' 'Crazy Rich Asians,' 'Westworld' Among Costume Designers Guild Winners

    “Crazy Rich Asians,” “The Favourite” and “Black Panther” walked away with top honors at the 21st annual Costume Designers Guild Awards Tuesday night, the final industry guild show before the Oscars on Feb. 24. “The Favourite” and “Black Panther” are up for the Oscar this year, along with “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” “Mary Poppins [...]

  • WGA Writers Contract Talks

    Talent Agents, WGA Achieve Progress in Second Round of Talks

    Hollywood talent agents and the Writers Guild of America have achieved some progress at their second negotiating session over agency regulations, according to sources close to the talks. The two sides met Tuesday, two weeks after their first meeting resulted in both sides criticizing each other, followed by the WGA holding a trio of spirited [...]

  • Aaron Paul

    Film News Roundup: Aaron Paul Honored by Sun Valley Film Festival

    In today’s film news roundup, Aaron Paul is honored, Bruce Berman is re-upped at Village Roadshow, and Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher get a book deal. FESTIVAL HONORS Related Number of Female Directors Falls Despite Diversity Debate, Says Study The Sun Valley Film Festival has selected Idaho native and three-time Emmy winner Aaron Paul as [...]

  • Olivia Munn]EMILY'S List Pre-Oscars Brunch, Inside,

    Olivia Munn Says Brett Ratner Called Her Before His 'Howard Stern' Apology

    Olivia Munn is setting the record straight about standing up to “Rush Hour” director Brett Ratner, whom she alleges sexually harassed her over a decade ago. During a panel discussion at the Emily’s List pre-Oscars brunch at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills Tuesday morning, Munn revealed that Ratner called her in 2011 after he denied [...]

  • Flesh Out review

    Berlin Film Review: 'Flesh Out'

    Ignore the awful English-language title: “Flesh Out” is an emotionally rich, sensitively made film about a young woman in Mauritania forced to gain weight in order to conform to traditional concepts of well-rounded beauty before her impending marriage. Strikingly registering the sensations of a protagonist living between the dutiful traditions of her class and the [...]

  • Marighella review

    Berlin Film Review: 'Marighella'

    Does Brazil need a film that openly advocates armed confrontation against its far-right government? That’s the first question that needs to be asked when discussing “Marighella,” actor Wagner Moura’s directorial debut focused on the final year in the life of left-wing insurrectionist Carlos Marighella during Brazil’s ruthless military dictatorship. For whatever one might think of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content