Film academy in­vites Thor, Won­der Woman to join its ranks

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Movies - By SANDY CO­HEN

THOR, Cap­tain Amer­ica, Won­der Woman and Betty White have been in­vited to join the film academy.

The Academy of Mo­tion Pic­ture Arts and Sciences re­vealed its lat­est in­vi­tees last week, which in­clude sev­eral artists from the worlds of ac­tion and com­edy.

“We are look­ing in ar­eas that his­tor­i­cally we hadn’t,” film academy pres­i­dent Ch­eryl Boone Isaacs said in an in­ter­view. The or­gan­i­sa­tion in­vited 774 new mem­bers to join its ranks – the largest class ever.

Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Gal Gadot, all fa­mous for their su­per­hero roles, were in­vited to join the ac­tors’ branch. Other ac­tors re­ceiv­ing in­vites in­clude White, Dwayne John­son, Riz Ahmed, Terry Crews, Chris Pratt, Anna Faris, Priyanka Cho­pra, Don­ald Glover and Zoe Kravitz.

Sev­eral Satur­day Night Live alumni were also in­vited: Amy Poehler, Molly Shan­non, Maya Ru­dolph and cur­rent stars Kate McKin­non and Les­lie Jones.

“It takes a lot to be a comedic ac­tor,” Boone Isaacs said, “and cer­tainly the branch is recog­nis­ing this tal­ent.”

She said the or­gan­i­sa­tion’s ef­forts to­ward in­clu­siv­ity may have in­spired in­ter­est among a broader range of prospec­tive mem­bers, who must be spon­sored by ex­ist­ing mem­bers to be con­sid­ered.

The film academy re­ports that its new class is 39% fe­male and 30% non-white. The or­gan­i­sa­tion has been di­ver­si­fy­ing its ranks af­ter two years of #Os­carsSoWhite and crit­i­cism of its over­whelm­ingly white and male vot­ing body. Women now com­prise 28% of academy mem­ber­ship and non­whites ac­count for 13%.

“This con­ver­sa­tion that the academy has been hav­ing for the last cou­ple years has re­ally en­er­gised our base, has re­ally en­er­gised our mem­bers and the com­mu­nity,” Boone Isaacs said.

Be­sides in­clud­ing film­mak­ers from tra­di­tion­ally over­looked gen­res, the new class of in­vi­tees also rep­re­sents 57 coun­tries.

“We’ve recog­nised great tal­ent around the world, but in one area we were not as ac­tive, and that is mem­ber­ship,” she said.

Os­car nom­i­nees are au­to­mat­i­cally con­sid­ered for mem­ber­ship. Moon­light writer-di­rec­tor Barry Jenk­ins has been in­vited to join both branches, but he’ll have to pick one. Hid­den Fig­ures di­rec­tor Theodore Melfi and doc­u­men­tar­ian Ezra Edel­man (O.J.: Made In Amer­ica) also re­ceived in­vi­ta­tions.

Joss Whe­don (The Avengers), Si­mon Pegg (Shaun Of The Dead) and Phil John­ston (Zootopia) were in­vited to the writ­ers’ branch.

Get Out writer-di­rec­tor Jor­dan Peele was in­vited to both writ­ing and di­rect­ing branches, while his Com­edy Cen­tral col­lab­o­ra­tor Kee­gan-Michael Key, was in­vited to join the ac­tors’ branch.

The mu­sic branch ex­tended in­vites to Lin-Manuel Mi­randa, Justin Tim­ber­lake, Nick Cave, Terry Lewis, Jimmy Jam and La La Land com­posers Benj Pasek, Justin Paul and Justin Hur­witz.

- AP

(From left) Jones, Faris, Pratt and Gadot are among the 774 peo­ple in­vited to join the Academy of Mo­tion Pic­ture Arts and Sciences.

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