For Your Consideration: Episode 3 – Will the Academy’s Diversity Movement Redefine ‘Oscar Bait’?

     September 13, 2018

Welcome to For Your Consideration, the Collider show that breaks down awards season with hosts Scott MantzPerri Nemiroff and Jeff Sneider. Today’s topic shines the spotlight on the Academy’s diversity initiative, and how that could affect not just this year’s nominations, but what we consider Oscar bait in general going forward.

The Academy invited 928 new members into its esteemed ranks this year, making the organization much younger and more inclusive. And while Academy voters ultimately determine the Oscar winners, the media plays a large role in shaping the conversation, which begs the question — will there be a push for diversity amongst that group as well? Will publicists and awards strategists reach out to reporters and editors of color, rather than cater to the same group of people each year?

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Image via Universal Pictures

The only non-traditional Best Picture nominees that really seem to have benefitted from the Academy opening up its ranks in recent years are Get Out and Mad Max: Fury Road, but going forward, will those kinds of celebrated blockbusters become the new normal at the Dolby Theatre? Or will the Academy continue to bestow its top awards on smaller films, thereby underscoring the need for a Best Popular Film category? Without a clear metric for “popularity,” there are still a lot of questions surrounding that award, but it’s worth questioning why the Academy didn’t even trust its diversity initiative enough to wait and see what the New Academy would vote for. Should the Academy trust its members more, or is it the organization’s duty to “lead the horse to water,” so to speak?

Could a foreign language film like Alfonso Cuarón‘s ROMA benefit from the Academy’s diversity movement? After all, if Amour can get a Best Picture nomination, there’s no reason that this black-and-white Netflix movie can’t get one, too — especially given its rapturious reception in Venice and Telluride. These are the kinds of topics that Scott, Perri and Jeff kick around in this mini-episode.

To stay up to date on all things For Your Consideration, follow the gang on Twitter and Instagram at @MovieMantz, @PNemiroff and @TheInSneider. Stay tuned next week for more awards talk, and we’ll FYC-ya later!

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Image via Annapurna Pictures

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