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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Augustana chapter.

The nominations for the 2019 Academy Awards were recently released, and after years of #OscarsSoWhite, nominations have diversified. Most notably, Marvel’s Black Panther received a nomination for Best Picture, making it the first superhero film to ever be considered in the category. The film was also nominated for Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Production Design, Original Score, and Costume Design. Fans have praised designer Ruth E. Carter for her intricate costume work on the film. Past works of hers has been snubbed for nominations, so her nomination on the historic Black Panther is particularly important to her.

Other notable firsts came from this year’s Oscar lineup. Netflix’s Roma raked in 10 nominations, including Best Picture, tying for most nominated this year. It is the first time a movie that premiered on a streaming service has been nominated for best picture. For her starring role in Roma, Yalitza Aparicio earned a Best Actress in a Leading Role nomination, making her only the second Mexican woman to ever be nominated in the category. Her costar Marina de Tavira is up for Best Supporting Actress.

Deborah Davis and co-writer Tony McNamara earned a nomination for the screenplay of The Favourite, a movie that Davis first conceptualized over two decades ago. This story of three women and their shifting power dynamics was considered too risky to produce when she first wrote it, but tied for this year’s most nominated film. All three actresses in the main roles were nominated for their portrayals of these feuding, power hungry women.

After his boycott of the award show in 2016, protesting the lack of diversity in nominations, director Spike Lee is nominated for his work on BlacKkKlansman. The film is also nominated for Best Picture, as well as Best Adapted Screenplay. He is only the fifth black man to be nominated for Best Director, and would be the first to win.

Fans of Bohemian Rhapsody were elated to find that the movie was nominated for Best Picture, and Rami Malek earned a Best Actor nomination for his portrayal of Queen frontman Freddie Mercury. He nabbed this award at the Golden Globes in January, and crowds appreciated that an Egyptian actor won the award. The movie has been praised for its portrayal of Mercury’s sexuality without exploiting his struggle with AIDS, a topic that has been commonly awarded by the Oscars. Despite recent controversy surrounding former producer of the film, Bryan Singer, critics do not think Bohemian Rhapsody will suffer from the swirling debate.

Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse, which has been universally loved by audiences and critics, is nominated for Best Animated Feature alongside Incredibles 2 (Disney films have notoriously dominated this category) and Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs. “Bao,” the animated short centered on the relationship between a parent and child in an Asian household is nominated for Best Animated Short.

Notably, “Bao” is one of the only Asian-centric nominations of the year. Despite the increasing diversity of Oscar nominations, which have included more black people than previous years, Asian people have been missing from nominations. 2018’s Crazy Rich Asians, which was the second American film to ever have an all Asian cast is blatantly missing from any category. There are no women in the Best Director category, a common occurrence that has been criticized in the past. Fans were also disappointed that John David Washington was snubbed for his leading role in BlacKkKlansman, despite his white counterpart, Adam Driver, being nominated for Best Supporting Actor. While there is no #OscarsSoWhite protest of the ceremony this year, there is certainly room for improvement.


Senior at Augustana College. Biochemistry and Psychology Major. Proud Feminist. Third Year with Her Campus. 
Augustana Contributor