Two-time Oscar winner Glenda Jackson is calling the awards show a “whole shebang of nonsense” amid backlash against the Academy for failing to nominate any people of color for the second year in a row.
“The Oscars have been transformed into what they are now,” she told Entertainment Weekly. “They have much less to do with cinema. They are about frocks and the whole shebang of nonsense. Nowadays, it seems like the real competition is between the different award shows. The Golden Globes, back in my day, if you won you were lucky to get a notice in the next day’s Los Angeles Times. Now the coverage is ludicrous.”
When asked whether she believes the Oscars “shine a light on social issues” and have any lasting cultural value, Jackson talked about police brutality towards black men and how that didn’t change even when “12 Years a Slave” won the Oscar for Best Picture last year.
“Who won last year? Who won the year before? Does it make one scrap of difference? At the time, it does, yes,” she said. “But that’s not how human beings are. We enjoy the glitz of the moment, which is what it is. But how can you say that ’12 Years a Slave’ or ‘Selma’ has caused a fundamental cultural shift? And then you have these black guys being shot by policemen. Would that the Oscars could change the world but, I’m sorry, it just ain’t true.”
Jackson was nominated four times for an Academy Award, but never went to the ceremony. However, one year, she was asked to open the envelope when she happened to be in Los Angeles.
“The other thing I found quite fascinating was the sense of excitement before the envelope was opened,” she said. “It was really potent and intense. And you know what? The minute the envelope was opened, nobody gave a toss. ‘Right, fine, who’s next?'”
When Jackson pondered the two Oscars she won, one Best Actress award for Ken Russell’s “Women in Love” and one Best Actress award for the romantic comedy “A Touch of Class” in 1971 and 1974, respectively, she said, “My sardonic view is that they’re not as important as everyone thinks they are.”