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'Parasite' And 'Booksmart' Stars Included In Oscar's Newest Academy Members

By Kristy Puchko | Film | July 1, 2020 |

By Kristy Puchko | Film | July 1, 2020 |


In a continued effort to combat #OscarsSoWhite (as well as Oscars So Out of Touch), The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has continued to expand its membership with an eye toward inclusion. Yesterday, The Academy announced the addition of 819 new members; 36% of this group are people of color while 45% are women.

The Academy has more than 8,000 members, 1/4th of which have been added over the past three years in the effort to get fresh blood and greater diversity in the old, white, male ranks. However, The Guardian notes that even with this inclusive injection, the Academy of 2018 was still 84% white. Which might explain that Green Book win for Best Picture. However, it’s speculated that the newer members were key to Bong Joon-ho’s Korean-language Parasite taking home history-making wins in Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Picture.

Speaking of Parasite, acclaimed cast members Choi Woo-Shik, Jang Hye-Jin, Jo Yeo-Jeong, Lee Jung-Eun, and Park So-Dam have all been invited to join the Academy. (Bong Joon Ho and Kang-ho Song had already been invited). Other exciting or intriguing additions to the actors’ branch include:

Yalitza Aparicio - Roma
Awkwafina - The Farewell, Crazy Rich Asians
Zazie Beetz - Joker, High Flying Bird
Zendaya - Spider-Man: Far from Home, The Greatest Showman
Mackenzie Davis - Terminator: Dark Fate, Tully
Ana de Armas - Knives Out, Blade Runner 2049
Kaitlyn Dever - Booksmart, Detroit
Cynthia Erivo - Harriet, Widows
Beanie Feldstein - Booksmart, Lady Bird
Adèle Haenel - Portrait of a Lady on Fire, BPM (Beats Per Minute)
Kelvin Harrison Jr. - Waves, Luce
Brian Tyree Henry - If Beale Street Could Talk, Widows
Eva Longoria - Overboard, Harsh Times
Natasha Lyonne - Honey Boy, American Pie
Tim McGraw - Country Strong, The Blind Side
Thomasin McKenzie - Jojo Rabbit, Leave No Trace
Ben Mendelsohn - Ready Player One, Animal Kingdom
Rob Morgan - Just Mercy, Mudbound
Niecy Nash - Downsizing, Selma
Teyonah Parris - If Beale Street Could Talk, Chi-Raq
Florence Pugh - Little Women, Lady Macbeth
LaKeith Stanfield - Knives Out, Sorry to Bother You
John David Washington - BlacKkKlansman, Monsters and Men
Olivia Wilde - Meadowland, Rush
Constance Wu - Hustlers, Crazy Rich Asians

Note: while Olivia Wilde is a director (Booksmart!); she was not included in the directors branch. Some new members to that group include Ari Aster (Hereditary, Midsommar), Mati Diop (The Atlantics, A Thousand Suns), Alma Har’el (Honey Boy, Bombay Beach), Matt Reeves (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Cloverfield), Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass, Layer Cake), and Lulu Wang (The Farewell, Posthumous).

Other thrilling additions were made to the Writers branch, which includes: Jérémy Clapin (I Lost My Body), Susanna Fogel (Booksmart, The Spy Who Dumped Me), Julia Hart (Fast Color, Miss Stevens), Stella Meghie (The Photograph, Jean of the Joneses), Pamela Pettler (Monster House, Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride), and Krysty Wilson-Cairns (1917).

Other branches that saw additions are Documentary, Executives, Film Editors, Makeup Artists and Hairstylists, Marketing and Public Relations, Music, Producers, Production Design, Short Films and Feature Animation (yes, they’re grouped together), Sound, Visual Effects, and Members at Large.

To see the full list, visit the Oscar’s official announcement.

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Kristy Puchko is the managing editor of Pajiba. You can follow her on Twitter.

Header Image Source: Getty