OPINION: Representation matters at the 2019 Academy awards

By Gustavo Buenrostro

It’s the middle of award season and the Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences released the list of its nominations for the Oscars.

What has people talking is the nomination for 2018’s critical and commercial success “Black Panther” for Best Picture.

It’s a comic book movie being acknowledged by the academy after years of fans wanting comic book films to be nominated.

For years studios have been pushing for their most successful films to be nominated and finally this year they are.

However, this is not why the nomination is important.

This nomination, perhaps, shows a change in the academy’s slow move toward progression.

This nomination is the first big-budget film that features a full cast of African Americans,with Chadwick Boseman as the leading role.

While “Black Panther” is not the first film to be nominated for Best Picture with an all black cast and lead, “Moonlight” being the other film, it is the first movie to have earned a billion dollars at the worldwide box office.

What this nomination shows the public is that the academy is responding to what  audiences like.

Sites like Rotten Tomatoes show audiences’ and critics’ perspectives,  and draw a consensus by making up a percentage.

If the percentage is above 51 percent, it is certified fresh. “Black Panther” has a 97 percent on RT.

Perhaps one of the reasons this film was nominated was because it is one of the best examples of representation for a minority group.

This is important because it shows that things are progressing in society as a whole.

People are willing to accept a black man as a superhero – as a role model.

Hollywood has always reflected society, and now it is reflecting  the inclusion society is striving for.

This nomination is not good just for the African American population, but for all minorities.

The nomination of a film that showcases society’s thirst for diverse films may allow other films the chance to get the recognition and the messages they are trying to send out for movie goers consumption.

Just in the past few years awards have gone to Guillermo del Toro for Best Director and Jordan Peele for  Best Original Screenplay.

With “Black Panther” being nominated, it shows that things are progressing in society.

In all likelihood “Black Panther” won’t get the win, as the film is mediocre.

Nevertheless, it  has a good message and it doesn’t detract from what it’s done.

Hopefully with this film being nominated more films like this will be recognized too.

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