The Academy still has a long way to go. The 2023 Oscar nominations, which were announced on January 24, revealed the Academy failed to nominate a single woman for Best Director – one of the show’s biggest snubs to date. Despite talented female directors such as Charlotte Wells (“Aftersun”), Sarah Polley (“Women Talking”) and Gina Prince-Bythewood (“The Woman King”) in talks to receive their deserved recognition, all five nominations ended up going to male directors.
The official list of nominees for Best Director includes Steven Spielberg (“The Fabelmans”), Todd Field (“Tár”), Martin McDonagh (“The Banshees of Inisherin”), Ruben Östlund (“Triangle of Sadness”), and Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert (“Everything Everywhere All at Once” ).
This disappointing oversight will officially end the two-year streak of women winning the award in this category, which previously celebrated Jane Campion for “The Power of the Dog,” and gave Chloe Zhao its flowers in 2021 for “Nomadland”. Also note that in the entire history of the Oscars, these are two of the three women to have won the Oscar for best director, against 71 men. The Oscars also failed to nominate a single black woman for Best Actress, leading some to wonder if the Academy is regressing on diversity and inclusion.
There were, however, some positive landmark nominations ahead of the 2023 awards show. Michelle Yeoh became the first ever Best Asian Actress nominee for her role in ‘Everything Everywhere All At Once’. Ke Huy Quan, Stephanie Hsu and Hong Chau also received nominations, making them the most Asian actors ever nominated by the Academy in a single year. Still, it shouldn’t be that hard to work at an awards show in which the nominees truly reflect the talent. Hopefully in the future, the Academy, including the 573 members of the Trustee Branch, will hear this criticism and use it to recognize a wider variety of voices and perspectives.