The Oscars – Diversity, Equal Pay, Weirdness and Disabilities

OscarsThis year’s Oscars have come and gone admit the regular spectacular musical numbers, poor fashion choices and political statements. I am not here address the issue of boycotting the Academy Awards because it  continues to ignore African American performances and has been dubbed the “whitest Oscars” since 1998.

Nor am I going to analyse Patricia Arquette using her time to say,

“It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all, and equal rights for women in the United States of America.”

The most moving moment of the evening was the acceptance speech from Graham Moore who won for Best Adapted Screenplay for The Imitation Game,

“When I was 16 years old,I tried to kill myself because I felt weird and I felt different and I felt like I did not belong. And now I’m standing here and so I would like for this moment to be for that kid out there who feels like she’s weird or she’s different or she doesn’t fit in anywhere. Yes, you do. I promise you do. You do. Stay weird, stay different. And then when it’s your turn and you’re standing on this stage, please pass the same message to the next person who comes along.”


Many autistics took Moore’s comment weird to be a reference to Turing probably being on the spectrum but as Slate writes it is far more than likely it is in response to Turning being gay. Some have taken abridge to have the two terms connected. 

Forget the best dressed or the bad jokes – here is our favourite trashy moment when Benedict Cumberbatch who came prepared to entertain himself was not as pleased to see it shared on camera.

Benedict-Cumberbatch-257082

And the Washington Post was quick to point out: 14 of 27 Best Actors tackled characters facing significant mental or physical barriers to what many consider normal life.  This is not new.  Back in 2012, BBC pointed out that the second best way to win an Oscar was to play someone with a disability,

A total of 16% of all winners played such roles. For men the percentage is slightly higher, at 17%, compared with 14% for women.

The best way?   Play a living person.  So Eddie Redmayne was a sure bet on both accounts. What was particularly interesting was just how many nominations this year were for actors playing an individual with some form of “disability” or medical ailment. It has brought to the forefront once again the

The Academy of Motion Pictures has only awarded three Oscars to persons with a physical disability. And the parts in film and television have been as scarce. Outside of the United States more diversity has been evident because glamour and sex appeal are not as much of a driving force as the creation of art. But perhaps that is a story for another day.

Finally, last week was rather crazy with our article on “What happened to Carly Fleischmann?: an exclusive interview with her father” that I didn’t have time to do my weekly “Celebrity Gossip” column.  The only thing to report was that yes indeed Leeza Gibbons beat out Geraldo Rivera to win Trump’s Celebrity Apprentice. Out congratulations to the charities that benefited from this show.

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