T+D Recap: The Oscars Turn 90!
by Alexa Dato
The 2018 Oscars (The Academy Awards officially) aired on Sunday night to reward outstanding films, scores, and actors from the previous year. Jimmy Kimmel hosted (again), offering a jet ski to the Oscar winner with the shortest acceptance speak, but Maya Rudolph and Tiffany Haddish are favorites to co-host the show next year. Off the red carpet and on stage, both actors and actresses could be seen wearing symbolic white roses alongside their “Time’s Up” pins while Ryan Seacrest was shunned amid recent sexual misconduct allegations. Here’s what you missed at the Oscars:
Taking Home the Gold:
Speaking Truth to Power
After the 2016 election, artists have taken more opportunities to use the spotlight at awards shows to address political issues and inequality within the country. One of the largest of the these inequalities is the Time’s Up movement, which specifically addresses sexual abuse and mistreatment of women in the film industry. Regardless if you believe that politics do not belong in the arts, music, and film, it is undeniable that the entertainment industry is self-reflecting on its need for diversity and inclusion of women and minorities and there is something we can all learn from watching.
Frances McDormand’s “Best Actress” Acceptance Speech
2 words: inclusion rider. Frances McDormand ended her acceptance speech for the Best Actress award by calling on all female nominees in any category to stand up for recognition and called on the audience to support their works in progress. Then she left all of us googling what an inclusion rider is and why we need it. In layman’s terms, an inclusion rider is a stipulation within a contract that requires the film to reflect the world outside it. Women, people with disabilities, minorities, and the LGBTQ community are often underrepresented in these film roles, so an inclusion rider requires the film to accurately portray the world we live in. The most recent example can be seen in Jessica Chastain tying her film contract to Octavia Spencer’s, ensuring that they would get paid the same amount. Chastain used her negotiating power to allow Spencer to earn 5 times the pay she normally would; this perfectly exemplifies “walking the walk” and focusing on intersectionality. Now we are wondering, why hasn’t this always existed in film contracts?
Why Ryan Seacrest Felt “Awkward” on the Red Carpet
Less than one month ago, Seacrest’s former personal stylist accused him of inappropriate sexual behavior over a period of multiple years, which he has firmly denied. Given the prevalence of the Time’s Up movement, Seacrest was avoided on the red carpet by all five nominees in the best actress category.
A Nation of Immigrants
In introducing the award for production design, Kumail Nanjiani and Lupita Nyong’o referenced the ongoing debate in Congress regarding Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), whose recipients are called Dreamers. Dreamers are classified as United States citizens after a given period of time, even though they immigrated to the U.S. illegally with their families as children. Nyong’o, who was born in Mexico and raised in Kenya, and Nanjiani, who is from Pakistan, referenced dreams as the foundation for the construction of this country and ended the award presentation by stating, “To all the dreamers out there, we stand with you.”
Post-Oscars Viewing Party:
If you missed out on these movies last year, it’s not too late to catch up! Here’s some of the Oscar-nominated movies we’ve tested out:
One sentence summary: Angsty teenage girl fights with her mom while navigating college applications and high school relationships.
One sentence summary: Meryl Streep battles sexism in the workplace and limits on the freedom of the press to expose a massive cover-up by the government.
One sentence summary: White girl brings her black boyfriend home to meet her “colorblind” family as told in a dark horror-comedy with modern social commentary.
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
One sentence summary: Frustrated mom goes to dramatic lengths to find justice for her daughter’s murder in a small Midwest town.
The 2018 Oscars awarded multiple women for their outstanding contributions to film in 2017 and recognized more traditionally marginalized artists than in previous years. We hope to see more awards shows recognizing true talent and moving past the historically superficial nature of Hollywood awards ceremonies.