By SOPHIA HERNANDEZ / Staff Writer
As awards season rolls around, the population of Ben and Jerry’s cartons in my freezer triples in size to sustain many nights in front of the TV screen. However, this awards season has also elicited an outcry regarding certain social and political issues that are brought to light both on the big screen and at the event itself.
And the Nominees are…
Many Hollywood films are controversial, relatable, and tell the stories of everyday American citizens. This inadvertently calls for themes of race, sexuality, religion, etc. to become prominent in everything that appears on screen—specifically in some of the feature film Oscar nominations. Let’s take the films Fences, Hidden Figures, and Moonlight. All of these movies revolve around themes such as race, gender, oppression, social class, and the struggles of the American individual. But what this awards season is clearly trying to highlight is that there is no single mold for the American individual or lifestyle to fit. The nominees themselves illustrate how diverse and vast the American population is. Just considering the actors: there are seven who are non-white and six that were born outside of America.
There have been many other breakthroughs in this year’s nominations. Australia received its first nomination for foreign film, Joi McMillon is the first African American woman to ever be nominated for film editing, and the sound editing team for La La Land are the first female team nomination.
This Oscars season, prepare for an awards event that is progressive, refreshing and eye-opening—a perfect side item for that carton of ice cream.
Conservatives vs. Celebrities
However, before you sit back, relax and enjoy the show, know that many nominees are refusing to attend the event that so many are anticipating. Because of President Donald Trump’s immigration order, many foreign nominees are boycotting the event as a way of condemning the ban as unacceptable and inappropriate. Plus, conservatives are accusing the “liberal” actors and Oscar nominees of using their acceptance speeches as political platforms to voice their opinions on current issues such as women’s rights, the immigration ban and so on. These individuals in opposition to the Oscars are upset that their President and party have been disagreed upon and criticized by celebrities. Some are even calling for a boycott against Hollywood and the Oscars with their “dimwitted liberals”.
The Academy Awards is not a political event, nor should it become one. However, being that many of Hollywood’s greatest stars tend to be more liberal, discourse between opposing political views is only to be expected. Additionally, some of those in non-attendees plead for the Oscars to be cancelled. But fear not, that is most likely not going to happen. We can instead grab our pints of “Chunky Monkey” and keep in mind those who are not there to relish in their successes while we listen to the many (and trust me, there will be many) political acceptance speeches. And with that, we thank the Academy and look forward to a historic night.