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75 Percent of Non-Acting Oscar Nominees Are Men, Women’s Media Center Report Shows

Infographics are available here.

The full report is available here.

Thursday, February 7, 2019


WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Women’s Media Center’s Investigation 2019: Gender and Non-Acting Oscar Nominations finds that women are, again, missing from the picture. No women were nominated in Directing, Cinematography, Editing, Original Score, and Visual Effects, and only one woman was nominated in Animated Feature film and in each of the two writing categories.

Women nominees were down from last year for Best Picture, Best Director, Original Screenplay, Editing, Cinematography, Production Design, and Animated Feature.  There was no change from last year in the categories of Adapted Screenplay, Documentary Short, Original Score, and Original Song.

“Again this year, women’s talent has not been recognized in many of the most powerful behind-the-scenes categories such as Directing, Cinematography, and Editing,” said Julie Burton, president of the Women’s Media Center. “Since the Women’s Media Center started counting the number of women nominated for non-acting Academy Awards as of 2006, the overall percentage of women nominees has increased from 18 to 25 percent. By that calculation, it will take another 50 years for women to be equally represented by the Academy. We need industry leaders to get on board and hire more women, especially women of color, in front of and behind the camera.”

Industry-wide efforts to improve gender parity have had some impact, but not as much as anticipated, according to the Women’s Media Center analysis. The overall percentage of female nominations in non-acting categories was marginally higher than last year – 25 percent compared to 23 percent, with the number of women nominees higher in the categories of Documentary Feature, Costume Design, Makeup and Hairstyling, Live Action Short and Animated Short.

“A nomination for an Academy Award can open doors,” said Jane Fonda, co-founder of the Women’s Media Center. “With three out of every four non-acting nominations going to men, women, again, are missing that stamp of approval.”

There is hope that movements for representation and equality, such as those represented by #OscarsSoWhite and #OscarsSoMale, and the efforts of powerful actors to have “inclusion riders” written into their contracts, will shift these numbers for diverse women going forward. But the Oscar nominations in 2019 do not yet reflect the gender equity or inclusivity activists are aiming for.  

The 91st Academy Award nominations were unveiled on January 22 by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Winners will be announced during the telecast on Sunday, February 24, on ABC.

This report was reported and written by Sasha Stone with research from Tiffany Nguyen. The Oscar analysis was drawn using information from Oscars.org.

The Women’s Media Center, founded by Jane Fonda, Robin Morgan, and Gloria Steinem, is an inclusive and feminist organization that works to make women visible and powerful in the media. We do so by promoting women as decision makers and as subjects in media; training women to be effective in media; researching and exposing sexism and racism in media; and creating original online and on-air journalism. 

For more information, contact Cristal Williams Chancellor, director of communications, at cristal@womensmediacenter.com or 202-270-8539.

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