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The Oscars ignored talented women… again!

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

Five or six people are usually nominated for “Best Director” at the Oscars each year, let’s stick with five for now. The Oscars have been happening for almost 94 years.

So, there have been 470 nominees over the years. Why have only SEVEN of those nominees been women? And why have only three of them won?

The academy has had many complaints over the years regarding its lack of inclusivity towards people who are not white men, but nothing has changed. Last year’s Oscars when Jane Campion took home the “Best Director” for her film “The Power of the Dog” made her the third woman to bring home an Oscar in this category.

The film industry has always been hard for women to be taken seriously, specifically in the past 10 years dealing with Harvey Weinstein and seeing how many women were looked over and ignored over the years.

This year, the nominees for best director were:

  • Daniel Kwan, the winner, who also won “Best Picture” and “Best Orginal Screenplay.”
  • Martin McDonagh who won “Live Action Short Film” in 2006.
  • Steven Spielberg who has won “Best Director” twice, once in 1994 and then again in 1999. In 1994 he also won “Best Picture” and in 1987 he won the “Irving Thalberg Memorial Award.”
  • Todd Field who won “Best Picture,” “Best Director,” and “Best Orginal Screenplay” all in 2023. He also took home two awards in 2002, “Best Picture” and “Best Adapted Screenplay” and in 2007 he won “Best Adapted Screenplay.”
    • Lastly, Ruben Östlund, who has not won an Oscar yet.

    So why are the Oscars renominating people that have been nominated multiple times, and most of them won multiple times, especially after they have the knowledge that the statue that you receive is not the point of receiving an Oscar, it’s a way to push your career forward? It’s hard to tell, but they do give the impression that they do not want to give this opportunity to women.

    There has been a big rise in the number of women who have been directing phenomenal films in the past few years. Here are some of my favorites from 2022 who deserve some more recognition:

    “Turning Red” is an animated film directed by Domee Shi, who is the first Asian woman to direct a Pixar film! The film follows a young girl who finds out she turns into a giant red panda.

    “I wanna Dance With Somebody” is Whitney Houston’s bio-pic and was directed by Kasi Lemmons. She is an African American woman who has directed many amazing films like “Eve’s Bayou” and “Harriet.” Almost all of her films include a strong, Black woman as the lead and are very inspiring.

    “Don’t Worry Darling” is a film about a 1950s housewife who realizes there’s something strange going on in her town. It’s directed by Olivia Wilde, and although people have mixed feelings about her there is no denying that the film is amazing and the lead, played by Florence Pugh is so strong.

    The Oscars are supposed to highlight talented people, how can we celebrate women if they are not highlighted for their talents?

    I'm a assistant editor for Her Campus at Penn State! I'm a student here at PSU majoring in journalism and minoring in english!