Female directors rejected in 2023 Oscar nominations

The Academy Awards failed to nominate any women for director this year, after two consecutive years in which women won the category.

The Oscar nominations announced Tuesday did not include female filmmakers such as Sarah Polley (“Women Talking”), Gina Prince-Bythewood (“The Woman King”), Maria Schrader (“She Said”) and Charlotte Wells (“She Said “). Aftersun”) in the best director lineup. Women have won the category for the past two years in a row, with Chloé Zhao taking the 2021 prize for “Nomadland” and Jane Campion scoring last year for “Power of the Dog.”

The director category is voted for by the 573 active members of the Directors Branch. The five cinematic helmsmen recognized by the Academy are Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert (“Everything Everywhere at Once”), Todd Field (“Tár”), Martin McDonagh (“The Banshees of Inisherin”), Ruben Östlund (“Triangle of Sadness”) and Steven Spielberg (“The Fabelmans”).

After the nominations, the organization Women In Film condemned the Los Angeles Academy for excluding female filmmakers. “Once again, Academy voters have shown they don’t value women’s voices, shutting us out of the Best Director nominations,” they said in a statement. “An Oscar is more than a gold statue, it’s a career accelerator that can lead to continued work and increased compensation. This is why WIF will continue to champion the work of talented female directors such as Sarah Polley’s ‘Women Talking’, Gina Prince-Bythewood’s ‘The Woman King’, Maria Schrader’s ‘She Said’, Chinonye Chukwus’ ‘Till’ and Charlotte Wells’ Aftersun,’ must be included.”

Seven women have been nominated for director in Oscar history and produced only three winners – Kathryn Bigelow for “The Hurt Locker” (2009), Chloé Zhao for “Nomadland” (2020) and Jane Campion for “The Power of the Dog” (2021 ) ). The other nominated women have been Lina Wertmüller for “Seven Beauties” (1976), Campion for “The Piano” (1993), Sofia Coppola for “Lost in Translation” (2003), Greta Gerwig for “Lady Bird” (2017) and Emerald Fennell for “Promising Young Woman” (2020).

The year for Fennell and Zhao was the first time more than one woman had ever been nominated, while Campion’s recognition last year was the first time a woman returned as a nominee.

Women have made strides in Hollywood over the past few years, especially with the Academy Awards, but there is still room for improvement.

Although no women were recognized for directing, Polley’s critically acclaimed drama “Women Talking,” an adaptation of the novel by Miriam Toews, was among the 10 Best Picture nominees.

Before the year’s best picture nominees, there were 581 films nominated by the academy. Only 18 of these films were directed by a woman, starting with Randa Haines’ “Children of a Lesser God” (1986).

The Academy’s choice is only a symptom of the problem plaguing Hollywood. While there has been clear improvement over the last few decades, there has also been regression, as evidenced by USC Annenberg’s research. The report found that of the 111 directors hired to make the 100 highest-grossing films last year, only 9% were women. That was down from 12.7% in 2021. At the same time, the number of Black, Asian, Hispanic/Latino, and multiracial and multiethnic filmmakers also dropped from 27.3% in 2021 to 20.7% in 2022. Women of color accounted for only 2.7% of the directors of the top 100 films last year.

The 95th Academy Awards will air live on ABC on March 12 from the Dolby Theater in Hollywood.

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