The film, depicting the 1965 voting rights march led by Martin Luther King Jr. from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, was nominated for Best Picture and Best Original Song. But the critically acclaimed film’s mere two nominations angered some media figures who took to social and digital spaces to express their shock at the snub.
“To the extent that one can be ‘angry’ about a certain filmmaker not being nominated for a major award that honors the best in filmmaking, I am angry,” Mendelson wrote.
“I am angry both because she deserved a nomination. I am angry because if the legacy of DuVernay’s Selma becomes shaped by its Oscar-season controversy, I fear that it will affect the artistic opportunities afforded to its African-American female director in a manner different than if Selma would have come under fire under the directorial lens of a white male filmmaker.”
CNN’s Don Lemon echoed his sentiments:
— Don Lemon (@donlemon) January 15, 2015
His colleague, Bill Weir, tweets about the demographic breakdown of Oscar voters.
Worth remembering that Oscar voters are 93% white, 76% male with average age of 63. (h/t @latimes)
— Bill Weir (@BillWeirCNN) January 15, 2015
The Atlantic’s David Frum suggests the controversy surrounding the depiction of former President Lyndon Baines Johnson played a hand in Selma being sidelined.
Is anyone surprised that Lyndon Johnson turns out to control a big block of votes at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences?
— David Frum (@davidfrum) January 15, 2015
The Grio’s Chris Witherspoon turned back the calendar 86 years.
— Chris Witherspoon (@WitherspoonC) January 15, 2015
Former CNN commentator and current TV One host Roland Martin urged fans to send Ava Duvernay supportive tweets.
— rolandsmartin (@rolandsmartin) January 15, 2015
PBS’ Gwen Ifill was short and sweet.
So. Go see #SelmaMovie anyway.
— gwen ifill (@gwenifill) January 15, 2015
And MSNBC’s Al Sharpton called the lack of diversity “appallingly insulting,” noting the cases of Michael Brown and Eric Garner to The New York Daily News.
“In the time of Staten Island and Ferguson, to have one of the most shutout Oscar nights in recent memory is something that is incongruous.”