Leading up to Christmas, the predominant headline about Little Women was that they were having a hard time getting men to come to the screenings which may have been why the film was largely ignored by the Golden Globes and the Screen Actors Guild. So the box office matters – I mean it always matters, awards or not, but in this case, performing well at the box office, and everyone in the industry pays attention to the receipts, further strengthens the case. Little Women is critically acclaimed, it’s made a lot of money, the audience showed up…what’s the f-cking problem?
The Producers Guild of America announced their nominations yesterday and, yes, Little Women made the cut for their version of Best Picture, and that’s definitely a positive since the PGA and the Oscars often align. But then… there’s the BAFTAs. As in #BAFTAsSoWhite.
All 20 of the BAFTA acting nominations are white. No female directors were nominated. It’s amazing Parasite actually made the cut considering there are no white people in that film. What’s also stupidly amazing is that Margot Robbie received not one but TWO (!) nominations for Best Supporting Actress for her performances in Bombshell and Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood which is why Jennifer Lopez was left off the ballot.
When asked to address the nominations and the ensuing backlash, Marc Samuelson, chair of the BAFTA film committee told Variety that:
“Infuriating lack of diversity in the acting noms. It’s just a frustration that the industry is not moving as fast as certainly the whole BAFTA team would like it to be.”
I mean, yeah, for sure, there’s a problem in the industry but should the industry be eating all of it? Because in addition to JLo in Hustlers, Lupita Nyong’o was incredible in Us. And Awkwafina delivered in The Farewell. And Cynthia Erivo killed it in Harriet. And she’s British! They know she’s British! They actually asked her to sing at the ceremony! According to Variety, the BAFTAs made the request back in December and her team, quite rightly, told them they wouldn’t commit until the nominations were announced.
Well. The nominations have been announced. And they went back to her with the ask. They were like, hey, so we’ve just nominated 19 white people in the acting categories, including one for two slots, and we overlooked you, but yeah, can you show up and sing for us?
Maybe it was too much to ask for Cynthia to be BAFTA-recognised. You know why? Denzel Washington has NEVER, ever, ever been nominated for a BAFTA.
So how does this affect the Oscars? There’s significant overlap between Oscars and BAFTA which is why a lot of people are wondering whether or not there could be a white-out when the Oscar nominations come on Monday. I don’t think it’ll be a complete whitewash. I really do think Awkwafina will get in, especially now that she’s won a Golden Globe. But if she does get in, she’ll get in ahead of Cynthia and Lupita. That’s not a great look either considering three women of colour are vying for just one opening position as the other four spots have seemingly all been locked in by white women. We only have room for one of you!
Going back to Cynthia Erivo though – I’m so curious about how her reps declined the invitation. Was it a simple, no thanks? Or was it stronger like… SERIOUSLY?!?
Yours in gossip,