• Greta Gerwig and Jordan Peele have both been nominated in the Best Director category at this year's Academy Awards. (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
The Academy has moved on from the #OscarsSoWhite and #OscarsSoMale controversy of 2016 with these six nominations.
Caitlin Chang

24 Jan 2018 - 12:16 PM  UPDATED 24 Jan 2018 - 12:22 PM

As the Oscar nominees were announced on Tuesday morning in the US, it’s clear that the Academy were focused on diversity. And given the atmosphere at this year’s Golden Globes and the SAG Awards, how could voters not address the calls for Hollywood to become more inclusive?

Amidst the nominations which included Australia’s Margot Robbie for best actress in I, Tonya and Meryl Streep for The Post, these nominations cut through to celebrate diversity.

Rachel Morrison for best cinematography

The Mudbound cinematographer has made history as the first female director of photography to receive an Oscar nomination in this category. Morrison’s work on the Netflix epic drama has already earned her a win from the New York Film Critics Circle and a nomination from the American Society of Cinematographers. “I hope that it’s the first of many,” she told Entertainment Weekly of the historic win. “If it serves as nothing else, I hope it inspires more women to get behind the camera and become cinematographers.”

Greta Gerwig for best director

Only the fifth woman in history to be nominated for a director’s Oscar, Gerwig’s nomination marks the first time in eight years (Katherine Bigelow won for the Hurt Locker in 2008) a female director has been recognised. The Ladybird director recently told Variety’s ‘The Playback’ podcast, “the number of women who are making really interesting films and the desire to shine a spotlight on them and us and women producers and directors and filmmakers and executives, that’s the thing I’m heartened by.”

Jordan Peele for best director

Alongside Gerwig and The Shape Of Water director Guillermo del Toro, Peele has broken away from the white male template (as we saw with predominately white male lineup of the best director category at the Golden Globes). Peele’s film Get Out also scored nominations for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay and Best Actor (for Daniel Kaluuya). Sharing his reaction on Twitter, he wrote “You know when you’re on the phone trying to disguise the sound of an ugly cry? I failed at that.”

A Fantastic Woman for best foreign language film

The film stars transgender Chilean actress Daniela Vega in one of the most talked about performances of last year. While Vega herself didn’t earn a nomination, director Sebastián Lelo has said she made the film. “Daniela’s presence took the film in a different dimension, and she brought something that a cisgender actor wouldn’t be able to bring.”

Strong Island for best documentary

Another big victory for transgender representation on film, Yance Ford is the first transgender director of an Oscar-nominated film, which explored the murder of Ford’s brother. “I think that everybody out there should know that there is a generation of trans directors who are coming for their Oscars,” he told Entertainment Weekly. “So this might be the first but it certainly won’t be the last.”

Kumail Nanjiana and Emily Gordon for best original screenplay

The Pakistani-born, American-based actor starred in The Big Sick, which he co-wrote with his wife, Emily Gordon. Nanjiani has previously spoken of the need for diversity in films. “People want stories from different perspectives. It helps obviously having diversity onscreen and diversity behind the camera is important from a societal perspective but I also think it’s financially a good thing. I mean, if you see Get Out, that’s a horror movie from a new perspective, or Wonder Woman. That’s a female superhero movie directed by a female director, and those were both very, very successful, so I think there should be more of these stories, because they also make money. People want to see them.”

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