Have you ever entered a competition? With every competition there are rules for entering. If you’re entering a science fair, for example, one of the criteria might be that the project has to solve a current problem related to the environment and another might be that you have to be between the ages of twelve and sixteen. Requirements help those entering know what is and isn’t acceptable. But can requirements actually encourage people to enter? Sounds odd, but the answer is yes.
Recently, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (the Academy), the organization that hosts the Academy Awards, or the Oscars, changed its consideration guidelines for the Best Picture award. Why? Well, earlier this year, the award for Best Picture was given to Parasite, a film that was directed, produced, and written by Bong Joon Ho of South Korea. No big deal, right? Actually, it was a huge deal because for the first time in Oscars’ history, a non-English-language film won the coveted Best Picture award. While it was a historical moment, and ninety-two years in the making, the win also highlighted the Oscars’ lack of inclusivity and diversity in the types of films that have been considered and recognized. But things are hopefully going to change because earlier this month, the Academy announced that films being considered for the 2024 Best Picture award must meet a selection of their new inclusivity and diversity standards. What are some of these standards? The lead or supporting actor must be from an “underrepresented racial or ethnic group[s]” and the story must be centered around one of these groups. Although some criticize that the Academy took too long to include these standards in their selection process, others believe that it’s a step in the right direction. What do you think?
If you were to nominate a film for the Oscars for Best Picture, what would it be and why? Share your thoughts by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.