In La La Land

The com­ing-of-age film Moon­light bagged the Os­car for Best Film af­ter ac­tress Faye Du­n­away, on stage with fel­low ac­tor War­ren Beatty, made a faux pas by an­nounc­ing LaLaLand as the win­ner in the cat­e­gory

The Economic Times - - Around The World - 6721

(From­left) Best Sup­port­ing Ac­tor Ma­her­shala Ali, Best Ac­tress Emma Stone, Best Sup­port­ing Ac­tress Vi­ola Davis and Best Ac­tor Casey Af­fleck pose with their Os­cars; (R)‘Moon­light’ rec­ti­fies LaLaLand pro­ducer Jordan Horowitz. Reuters/AP

and Vi­ola Davis’s em­bat­tled housewife in Fences, both sup­port­ing roles, were early win­ners in Sun­day night’s cer­e­mony. Ali is also the first Mus­lim to win an act­ing Os­car, ac­cord­ing to the LosAn­ge­les Times. Barry Jenk­ins and Tarell Alvin McCraney won for adapted screen­play for Moon­light, the first time mul­ti­ple African-Amer­i­can writ­ers have re­ceived an Os­car in the same year.

“This goes out to all those black and brown boys and girls and all those non­gen­der-con­form­ing,” McCraney said. “This is to all of you.”

Ali and Davis were two of the six black actors nom­i­nated for an Academy Award af­ter two years when peo­ple of colour were snubbed. In re­sponse to com­plaints about a lack of di­ver­sity, the Academy of Mo­tion Pic­ture Arts & Sciences last year brought in 683 new mem­bers, al­most dou­ble the num­ber added the pre­vi­ous year, to in­clude a more di­verse group of peo­ple. The Academy Awards, hosted this year on ABC by Jimmy Kim­mel, can boost the for­tunes of small films and cre­ate new power bro­kers in Hol­ly­wood. More im- por­tantly, they’re a cul­tural touch­stone, draw­ing more than 30 mil­lion view­ers in the US alone. A lack of di­ver­sity re­mains an is­sue in front of and be­hind the cam­era, and the #Os­carsSoWhite Twit­ter cam­paign of the last two years clearly bruised Hol­ly­wood, nor­mally known as a bas­tion of lib­er­al­ism. The elec­tion of Trump, a Repub­li­can, in Novem­ber also gave this year’s awards cer­e­mony spe­cial sig­nif­i­cance, since actors such as Meryl Streep have di­rectly drawn the pres­i­dent’s ire for us­ing their celebrity to make po­lit­i­cal state­ments. “Thank you, Pres­i­dent Trump,” Kim­mel said in his open­ing mono­logue. “Re­mem­ber last year when it seemed like the Os­cars were racist? That’s gone, thanks to him.”

That was one of sev­eral jokes at the pres­i­dent’s ex­pense, in­clud­ing sev­era­len­treaties­byKim­melforTrumpto tweet­about­the­p­ro­ceed­ings.Asofthe end of the cer­e­mony, he hadn’t obliged.


Few other pre­sen­ters or win­ners made overt po­lit­i­cal state­ments. Ruth Negga, nom­i­nated for her role in Lov­ing, and Lin-Manuel Mi­randa, cre­ator of the mu­si­cal Hamil­ton, were among actors wear­ing a blue ribbon in sup­port of the Amer­i­can Civil Lib­er­ties Union. Di­rec­tor Ava Du­Ver­nay, whose film 13th about mass in­car­cer­a­tion was nom­i­nated for best doc­u­men­tary, posted a pic­ture of her­self on so­cial me­dia hold­ing a sweater with the name Trayvon, in mem­ory of Trayvon Martin, the teenager gunned down in 2012. Her film lost to OJ: MadeinAmer­ica, which ex­plores the racial themes b eh i nd t he 1 9 9 5 mur­der trial of the for mer fo otb a l l star OJ Simp­son. As­ghar Farhadi, the Ira­nian di­rec­tor of best for­eign film win­ner TheSales­man, said in a state­ment read at the cer­e­mony that he boy­cotted the event in sol­i­dar­ity with those af­fected by “in­hu­mane” travel re­stric­tions Trump im­posed on Iran and other Mus­lim­ma­jor­ity coun­tries.


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