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Oscars Snub LGBTQ+ Actors and Films Amid Other Wins in Representation


No out actors were nominated -- and several acclaimed queer productions did not make the cut.


The Oscar nominations are here -- and they're not so queer.

While Viola Davis (Ma Rainey's Black Bottom) and Andra Day (The United States vs. Billie Holiday) were nominated in the category of Best Actress in a Leading Role for portraying bisexual blues icons, Ma Rainey and Billie Holiday, that was the extent of representation in the acting categories.

There were no out LGBTQ+ actors featured this year. Jodie Foster won a Golden Globe for her performance in The Mauritanian but did not receive a nomination from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Additionally, the Globes gave a nod to Rosamund Pike for her role as a queer (and wicked) guardian of the elderly in I Care a Lot, but the Academy did not.

There was some LGBTQ+ inclusion in the animated categories. Pixar's Onward, which featured a blink-and-you'll-miss-it queer supporting character voiced by Lena Waithe, was nominated in the Animated Feature Film category. And Two Distant Strangers, a short film about police brutality from bisexual writer Travon Free, received a nod for Animated Short.

There were many other notable LGBTQ+ snubs. David France's Welcome to Chechnya, a film about antigay persecution in the Russian-controlled region, was shortlisted for Best Documentary Feature but did not make the cut. Disclosure, the acclaimed doc about the history of trans representation in media, was also not featured in this category -- although this was no surprise, as it was not on the shortlist.

Two of Us, France's Oscar submission revolving around an elder lesbian love story, was snubbed in the Best International Feature category. And Pixar's Out, about a man's magical coming-out to his parents, Kapaemahu, and Pedro Almodovar's The Human Voice, starring Tilda Swinton in an adaptation of Jean Cocteau short play, were shortlisted in the shorts categories but were ultimately not nominated.

Out artist Janelle Monae was also snubbed for her original song "Turntables."

However, there were notable wins in representation. For the first time in Oscars history, two women, Chloe Zhao (Nomadland) and Emerald Fennell (Promising Young Woman), were nominated in the Best Director category. Minari's Steven Yuen is the first Asian-American actor up for Best Actor in a Leading Role. And Riz Ahmed (Sound of Metal) is the first actor of Pakistani descent nominated.

See the full list of nominees below.

Best Picture
The Father
Judas and the Black Messiah
Promising Young Woman
Sound of Metal
The Trial of the Chicago 7

Best Director
Lee Isaac Chung, Minari
Emerald Fennell, Promising Young Woman
David Fincher, Mank
Chloe Zhao, Nomadland
Thomas Vinterberg, Another Round

Best Actor
Riz Ahmed, Sound of Metal
Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
Anthony Hopkins, The Father
Gary Oldman, Mank
Steven Yeun, Minari

Best Actress
Viola Davis, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
Andra Day, The United States vs. Billie Holiday
Vanessa Kirby, Pieces of a Woman
Frances McDormand, Nomadland
Carey Mulligan, Promising Young Woman

Best Supporting Actor
Sacha Baron Cohen, The Trial of the Chicago 7
Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah
Leslie Odom Jr., One Night in Miami
Paul Raci, Sound of Metal
Lakeith Stanfield, Judas and the Black Messiah

Best Supporting Actress
Maria Bakalova, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
Glenn Close, Hillbilly Elegy
Olivia Colman, The Father
Amanda Seyfried, Mank
Yuh-Jung Youn, Minari

Original Screenplay
Judas and the Black Messiah
Promising Young Woman
Sound of Metal
The Trial of the Chicago 7

Adapted Screenplay
Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
The Father
One Night in Miami
The White Tiger

Animated Feature
Over the Moon
A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon

Production Design
The Father
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
News of the World

Costume Design
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

Sean Bobbitt, Judas and the Black Messiah
Erik Messerschmidt, Mank
Dariusz Wolski, News of the World
Joshua James Richards, Nomadland
Phedon Papamichael, The Trial of the Chicago 7

The Father
Promising Young Woman
Sound of Metal
The Trial of the Chicago 7

Makeup and Hairstyling
Hillbilly Elegy
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

News of the World
Sound of Metal

Visual Effects
Love and Monsters
The Midnight Sky
The One and Only Ivan

Da 5 Bloods
News of the World

Husavik (Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga)
Fight for You (Judas and the Black Messiah)
Lo Si (Seen) (The Life Ahead)
Speak Now (One Night in Miami)
Hear My Voice (The Trial of the Chicago 7)

Documentary Feature
Crip Camp
The Mole Agent
My Octopus Teacher

International Feature
Another Round, Denmark
Better Days, Hong Kong
Collective, Romania
The Man Who Sold His Skin, Tunisia
Quo Vadis, Aida?, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Animated Short
Genius Loci
If Anything Happens I Love You

Documentary Short
A Concerto Is a Conversation
Do Not Split
Hunger Ward
A Love Song for Latasha

Live-Action Short
Feeling Through
The Letter Room
The Present
Two Distant Strangers
White Eye

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Daniel Reynolds

Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.
Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.