Pretty much everyone already expected the Dolby Theatre to be full of white faces on Feb. 28 for the 88th Academy Awards. There barely being any people of color in the award nominees and the resulting boycotts and public criticisms of the Academy by those same forgotten faces made that pretty clear. But, due to a stipulation concerning who makes it onto the invite list in the first place, it looks like the boycotts are going to gain some more supporters.
Black actors just can’t catch a break…or a job.
A movie is coming out about Michael Jackson, Marlon Brandon, and Elizabeth Taylor taking a road trip to Ohio after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, which is based on what is rumored to be a true story.
Many thought the lack of diversity in the 87th Academy Awards in 2015 and the #OscarsSoWhite social media campaign that followed would be a sufficient wake up call. The last thing that anyone expected was that the 88th Academy Awards would take a major step in the wrong direction when it was already so far behind.
When Octavia Spencer won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress last night, I thought this blog had written itself. All I needed to do was list the names and roles of black women who had won Oscars, make a few comments about some very obvious things, and keep it moving. However, Meryl Streep’s shocking win over the presumed winner of the Best Actress award, Viola Davis, threw a bit of a wrinkle in that plan.
I’ve made it very clear that I was neither in support of The Help nor black actresses only being awarded for their craft when they reinvigorate old stereotypes that are both problematic and troublesome. I wonder, though, how many understand Davis’ unexpected loss. It seems like there are a few ways to interpret it:
I’ve grown suspicious of Sandra Bullock. And by “suspicious” I mean she’s annoying the fuck out of me. Inspired by such pestilence, I’m thinking of starting a Youtube show called Summer M.’s Most Wanted wherein I become internet famous by videotaping myself hating on celebrities who do things I find aggravating–like adopting black babies and then publicizing it. I could do my best John Walsh imitation (“…and remember, you too can make a difference.”), get some of the homies to re-enact the “crimes,” and use one of these programs on my computer to make up rap sheets with fake mug shots of said celebrities. My pilot episode would include segments on Tyler Perry, Oprah, Kobe Bryant, Justin Bieber, and the entire cast of Basketball [“]Wives[“]. Diggy Simmons could do the theme music. Think about it. I could become the next internet sensation. But I digress. Back to (white) starlets and black babies.
For a long time husbands had been notoriously recognized for outshining, outworking and “bringing home the bacon for” their wives. After a short marriage and divorce in 1991, followed by 19 years of hard work and accomplishment, Kathryn Bigelow has shown ex-husband, James Cameron, that she’s got things covered and won’t need any favors.
Her low budget production of The Hurt Locker wowed the critics and viewers at the Academy Awards, winning 6 Oscars out of 9 nominations, including Best Picture and Best Directing by Bigelow. She is the first woman to win Best Director at the Academy Awards and after 82 years, as Barbara Streisand declared when presenting the award, “It’s about time.” Bigelow accepted the award, hoping to be “the first of many” female Academy Award winning directors and advising any young filmmaker not to give up on dreams.
It’s only March, but Mo’Nique is indeed the frontrunner for the Best Year Ever Award. In a little less than a week, the self-proclaimed queen of comedy and Golden Globe (and Screen Actors Guild) Award winner, will probably win an Oscar for her work in Precious, despite her reluctance to “campaign” for the little gold statue.
Talk about a come up.