Hollywood stars celebrate Parasite’s historic Best Picture win at 2020 Oscars

Celebrities including Ava DuVernay, Sandra Oh, and Priyanka Chopra took to social media on Sunday night to celebrate Parasite becoming the first foreign language film to win the Oscar for Best Picture. Bong Joon Ho’s South Korean thriller was the under…

Celebrities including Ava DuVernay, Sandra Oh, and Priyanka Chopra took to social media on Sunday night to celebrate Parasite becoming the first foreign language film to win the Oscar for Best Picture.

Bong Joon Ho’s South Korean thriller was the underdog going into the ceremony and wasn’t expected to win much more than the Best International Feature Film category, but ended up sweeping the event with four wins, also including Best Original Screenplay, Best Director, and the night’s coveted Best Picture prize, which had been widely expected to go to 1917.

Social media users and celebrities alike were thrilled with the surprising and historic wins, with director DuVernay tweeting, “MASSIVE! HISTORIC! LANDMARK! PARASITE! The world is big and it is beautiful and films from everywhere deserve to be on that stage winning @TheAcademy’s highest honour. This is wonderful and right. #Oscars.”

Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu wrote, “Parasite Parasite Parasite Parasite!!!! Oh my gawwwdddd Parasite did it (sic)!!!! Director Bong did it!! The whole insanely talented cast did it!! South Korea did it. History made. Heading out to celebrate all night!!!” while Killing Eve star Oh posted, “Congratulations @ParasiteMovie So so proud to be Korean.”

Indian actress Chopra added, “Wow! It’s so emotional to see an international film like Parasite, in Korean with English subtitles, not only receive such a warm embrace from audiences around the world, but also this kind of recognition from one of the most prestigious film academy’s (sic) in the world… Congratulations to the entire film for shattering the glass ceiling and making history as the first non-English film to win Best Picture.”

South Korean President Moon Jae-in also offered up his congratulations on social media, thanking Joon Ho for giving “pride and courage” to the country’s people.

Earlier in the night, as the filmmaker accepted the Best Director prize, he told the audience, “After winning Best International Feature, I thought I was done for the day and was ready to relax. Thank you so much… I never thought I would win.”

He let other members of the Parasite team speak following the Best Picture win but told reporters backstage that the film’s Oscars haul was “really f**king crazy”.

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Stephen King backtracks over controversial Oscars diversity comments

Stephen King has clarified comments he made about the lack of diversity at the 2020 Academy Awards.Earlier this month, the horror author, who can vote in three Oscars categories, waded in on the controversy over the lack of women and people of colour n…

Stephen King has clarified comments he made about the lack of diversity at the 2020 Academy Awards.

Earlier this month, the horror author, who can vote in three Oscars categories, waded in on the controversy over the lack of women and people of colour nominated this year, and faced backlash from the likes of Ava DuVernay for tweeting that he would never consider diversity in regards to art and only focused on quality.

Now, the author has seemingly backtracked on his comments, and in an op-ed for The Washington Post published on Monday, he insisted he didn’t intend to spark outrage.

“I stepped over one of those lines recently by saying something on Twitter that I mistakenly thought was noncontroversial: ‘I would never consider diversity in matters of art. Only quality. It seems to me that to do otherwise would be wrong’. The subject was the Academy Awards,” King began. “I also said, in essence, that those judging creative excellence should be blind to questions of race, gender or sexual orientation.”

He denied he meant movies focusing on diversity and inequality “cannot be works of creative genius,” and noted that DuVernay’s 2019 Netflix miniseries, When They See Us, was a “splendid case in point.”

“Judgments of creative excellence should be blind. But that would be the case in a perfect world, one where the game isn’t rigged in favor of the white folks,” he wrote. “Creative excellence comes from every walk, color, creed, gender and sexual orientation, and it’s made richer and bolder and more exciting by diversity, but it’s defined by being excellent. Judging anyone’s work by any other standard is insulting and — worse — it undermines those hard-won moments when excellence from a diverse source is rewarded (against, it seems, all the odds) by leaving such recognition vulnerable to being dismissed as politically correct.”

King also questioned whether voters had seen all the eligible films and wrote that he hoped the demographic of the Oscars voting pool would eventually catch up with today’s diverse society.

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Ava DuVernay criticises Stephen King for diversity comments

Ava DuVernay has criticised author Stephen King for posting “backward and ignorant” tweets about the lack of diversity at the 2020 Oscars. The 2020 Academy Award nominations were announced on Monday, revealing that the vast majority of nominees were w…

Ava DuVernay has criticised author Stephen King for posting “backward and ignorant” tweets about the lack of diversity at the 2020 Oscars.

The 2020 Academy Award nominations were announced on Monday, revealing that the vast majority of nominees were white males, with only one out of the 20 acting nominees being a person of colour.

The lack of diversity sparked a debate on social media, and The Shining author Stephen King, who has had many books adapted into films and TV shows, decided to weigh in on the issue and tell his followers he doesn’t consider diversity when casting his vote in three Oscars categories.

“As a writer, I am allowed to nominate in just three categories: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Original Screenplay. For me, the diversity issue – as it applies to individual actors and directors, anyway – did not come up,” he tweeted on Tuesday. “That said… I would never consider diversity in matters of art. Only quality. It seems to me that to do otherwise would be wrong.”

His tweets sparked backlash online from many social media users, including Selma filmmaker DuVernay, who expressed her dismay at his remarks.

“When you wake up, meditate, stretch, reach for your phone to check on the world and see a tweet from someone you admire that is so backward and ignorant you want to go back to bed,” she commented alongside a retweet of King’s message.

Writer Roxane Gay also tweeted, “As a fan, this is painful to read from you. It implies that diversity and quality cannot be synonymous. They are not separate things. Quality is everywhere but most industries only believe in quality from one demographic. And now, here you are.”

King returned to Twitter later to try and calm the backlash by writing, “The most important thing we can do as artists and creative people is make sure everyone has the same fair shot, regardless of sex, colour, or orientation. Right now, such people are badly under-represented, and not only in the arts… You can’t win awards if you’re shut out of the game.”

The 2020 Oscars will take place in Los Angeles on 9 February.

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Ava DuVernay blasts decision to disqualify Lionheart from Oscars consideration

Ava DuVernay has blasted Oscars bosses for disqualifying Nigeria’s submission for the Best International Feature Film category because its main language is English.Lionheart, helmed by actress-turned-director Genevieve Nnaji, who also stars in the movi…

Ava DuVernay has blasted Oscars bosses for disqualifying Nigeria’s submission for the Best International Feature Film category because its main language is English.

Lionheart, helmed by actress-turned-director Genevieve Nnaji, who also stars in the movie, was disqualified from the running by officials from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) in an email issued on Monday.

Despite the film being partially in the Igbo language of Nigeria, it is mostly in English, violating an Academy rule that states entries in the category must have “a predominantly non-English dialogue track”.

The decision sparked outrage, with filmmaker Ava taking to Twitter to share her confusion over the decision.

“To @TheAcademy, You disqualified Nigeria’s first-ever submission for Best International Feature because it’s in English,” she wrote. “But English is the official language of Nigeria. Are you barring this country from ever competing for an Oscar in its official language?”

The Farming actress went on to share Ava’s post and added: “Thank you so much @ava I am the director of Lionheart. This movie represents the way we speak as Nigerians. This includes English which acts as a bridge between the 500+ languages spoken in our country; thereby making us #OneNigeria… As ever, this film and many like it, is proudly Nigerian. @TheAcademy.”

The Academy is yet to comment on the matter.

More than 90 countries have submitted films to be considered for the category, which was previously known as Best Foreign Language Film. From the long list, 10 finalists will be shortlisted in December, while the final five will be read out with the main nominations in January.

The 92nd Academy Awards will take place on 9 February at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.

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Ava DuVernay and Sam Rockwell to be honoured at Gotham Awards

Ava DuVernay and Sam Rockwell are set to receive honours at the 2019 Gotham Independent Film Awards. The Selma filmmaker and Vice star will receive the director and actor tributes, respectively, during the annual ceremony at Cipriani Wall Street in Ne…

Ava DuVernay and Sam Rockwell are set to receive honours at the 2019 Gotham Independent Film Awards.

The Selma filmmaker and Vice star will receive the director and actor tributes, respectively, during the annual ceremony at Cipriani Wall Street in New York on 2 December.

“Ava DuVernay is a groundbreaking and influential filmmaker whose work casts an overdue and much-needed light on the history of our nation’s systemic racism embedded in our institutions of justice today,” said Jeff Sharp, executive director of the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP), which presents the awards, and the Made in NY Media Center, in a statement. “She is enlightening and impactful to a new wave of filmmakers and her films are profoundly consequential to our nation’s continued endeavour to provide equal justice for all.”

The When They See Us director shared the news on Twitter and thanked the IFP for “this lovely honour.”

“We are equally delighted to present the deeply talented Sam Rockwell with the actor tribute,” the statement continued. “Sam simply brings brilliance to every role he plays – whether an anti-hero in an auteur-driven film, a hero in a studio tentpole or a legendary icon in a limited series. His compelling and genuine performances are a gift to us all. Both Ava and Sam are leaders and champions for independent film.”

The Gotham Awards, which recognise the best in independent film, traditionally marks the official start of Oscars season. Additional tribute recipients are to be announced in coming weeks, while the nominations will be read out on 24 October.

DuVernay is currently nominated for the Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Emmy for When They See Us, while Rockwell is nominated for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for Fosse/Verdon. The ceremony takes place on 22 September.

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Storm Reid eyed to play Idris Elba’s daughter in The Suicide Squad

Storm Reid is reportedly the top choice to play Idris Elba’s daughter in the new Suicide Squad movie.Editors at film publication The Wrap have claimed that the 16-year-old is being eyed for role in the upcoming The Suicide Squad, though a deal has yet …

Storm Reid is reportedly the top choice to play Idris Elba’s daughter in the new Suicide Squad movie.

Editors at film publication The Wrap have claimed that the 16-year-old is being eyed for role in the upcoming The Suicide Squad, though a deal has yet to be reached. Specific details about the part Reid could potentially play are being kept secret, with little known about Elba’s character either.

Should the 16-year-old sign on for the movie, she and Elba will join John Cena among the new castmembers of the follow-up to 2016’s supervillain film.

Margot Robbie, Joel Kinnaman, and Jai Courtney are reportedly set to return as DC Comics characters Harley Quinn, Rick Flag, and Captain Boomerang, respectively, while Oscar winner Viola Davis will also be back as Amanda Waller.

Reid has enjoyed a steady rise to fame in Hollywood, and recently appeared in HBO’s new show Euphoria, alongside Zendaya, and reunited with A Wrinkle in Time director Ava DuVernay for her critically-acclaimed Netflix series, When They See Us.

The starlet will reportedly finish filming on The Invisible Man remake, with Elisabeth Moss, before beginning shooting the comic book movie.

Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn is taking charge of the project, simply titled The Suicide Squad, with production expected to begin in September, ahead of an August 2021 release.

The first movie, directed by David Ayer and co-starring Will Smith, Jared Leto and Cara Delevingne, was critically mauled but went on to make almost $750 million (£600 million) at the global box office.

Elba was originally cast as Deadshot, effectively replacing Smith, although it was reported soon after the news was announced that the 50-year-old Oscar nominee was disappointed the British actor did not get his blessing before accepting the role.

According to editors at Collider, Elba and Gunn then created a new part in the movie for the Golden Globe-winning actor, but details are still under wraps.

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Tessa Thompson: ‘People of colour are giving each other the best film opportunities’

Tessa Thompson believes working with directors of colour has been the only way for her to get interesting roles.The Men in Black: International actress, who has Afro-Panamanian, Mexican, and European heritage, has been working solidly for the past five…

Tessa Thompson believes working with directors of colour has been the only way for her to get interesting roles.

The Men in Black: International actress, who has Afro-Panamanian, Mexican, and European heritage, has been working solidly for the past five years on films such as Selma, Creed, and Sorry to Bother You, helmed by the likes of Ava DuVernay, Ryan Coogler and Boots Riley, respectively.

When it was observed during her cover interview with Marie Claire magazine that she has worked with a lot of black directors, Tessa explained that it’s because people of colour have been better at offering interesting roles to other people of colour.

“It remains the only way,” she declared. “I look at actresses who are not of colour and at the opportunities that they’re presented in terms of directors wanting to make work for them. When I look at my contemporaries of colour, it’s only other artists of colour who are doing that in a real, robust way.”

Since filming Men in Black, the 35-year-old has lent her voice to Lady in the Disney remake of the Lady and the Tramp, filmed Sylvie, a love story set in midcentury Harlem, and is gearing up to reprise the role of Charlotte Hale in the third season of TV series Westworld.

Accordingly, Tessa admitted that her schedule is well and truly filled up.

“I’m really lucky to be inside of projects that I’m obligated to, but it means that I’m increasingly aware of the finite time that I have to make the things I just want to do,” the Los Angeles native explained. “I’ve slotted them into any little window, which means I just don’t have any windows right now.”

Men in Black marks her third time working with Australian actor Chris Hemsworth, after they previously teamed up for 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok and this year’s Avengers: Endgame, and the Dear White People star joked that they were like the new Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy, who had an onscreen and offscreen partnership for more than 20 years.

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Olivia Wilde wants to direct a Marvel superhero movie

Olivia Wilde wants to direct a Marvel superhero movie and thinks no genre should be off the table for female filmmakers. The 35-year-old recently made her directorial debut with comedy Booksmart, and the actress was quizzed by MTV about possible futur…

Olivia Wilde wants to direct a Marvel superhero movie and thinks no genre should be off the table for female filmmakers.

The 35-year-old recently made her directorial debut with comedy Booksmart, and the actress was quizzed by MTV about possible future projects she’d be inspired to take on.

When asked if she’d try her hand at directing a movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Wilde replied, “Totally yeah, absolutely.”

And with Oscar-nominated filmmaker Ava DuVernay heading up a movie adaptation of DC Comics’ The New Gods and Chloe Zhao directing The Eternals for Marvel, the mother-of-two is excited about the future of female filmmakers.

“I think that it’s exciting that now women like Ava DuVernay and Chloe Zhao are directing Marvel films and it’s exciting to think about what that will do to the franchise. I think it’s a proud… I’m a proud member of the movement of female directors, and I don’t think there’s any genre that should be off the table,” Wilde shared.

While she’s yet to be offered a superhero movie, the Cowboys & Aliens star would join a prestigious group of women when the time comes.

Zhao has become the first solo female director in the MCU, and will helm the highly-anticipated project based on Jack Kirby’s comic book, which follows the super-powered beings known as Eternals.

In addition, Anna Boden co-directed the hugely successful Captain Marvel, starring Brie Larson, and Cate Shortland has been confirmed to direct the Black Widow spin-off movie with Scarlett Johansson.

Wilde also praised the opportunities that are now being given to women in Hollywood, including heading up huge superhero franchises such as Wonder Woman, which is helmed by Patty Jenkins.

The 47-year-old was paid a handsome sum to return – along with leading woman Gal Gadot – for the sequel, Wonder Woman 1984.

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Denzel Washington awarded AFI Life Achievement Award

Denzel Washington was feted by the American Film Institute (AFI) in a special ceremony on Thursday. The movie legend was the 47th recipient of the AFI Life Achievement Award, and was the man of the hour at a gala tribute held at the Dolby Theatre in H…

Denzel Washington was feted by the American Film Institute (AFI) in a special ceremony on Thursday.

The movie legend was the 47th recipient of the AFI Life Achievement Award, and was the man of the hour at a gala tribute held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.

Peers including Ava DuVernay, Chadwick Boseman and Jodie Foster were there to cheer him on.

Talking to Entertainment Tonight about his biggest achievement in life, Denzel ignored his stellar film career, which has won him two Oscars, and instead chose his wife of nearly 36 years, Pauletta.

“(Actually) I was pointing to her,” Denzel said when Pauletta suggested their four children. “That’s my biggest lifetime achievement.”

The 64-year-old also revealed how honoured he was to be chosen by the AFI, following in the footsteps of Al Pacino, Tom Hanks and Jane Fonda.

“I’m humbled, I’m grateful, I’m thankful… I’ve never done this before so I can’t really tell you how I feel,” he smiled. “It doesn’t feel like other times I’m on the red carpet. I’m usually promoting a film or at an award show. (Here) I’ve already won, I guess, so it’s different. It’s relaxed.”

Other guests in attendance included Morgan Freeman, Mahershala Ali and Michael B. Jordan.

And Beyonce surprised guests when she stepped out on stage to heap praise on another honouree of the night, Franklin J. Schaffner Award recipient Melina Matsoukas.

Denzel can next be seen in Joel Coen’s version of Macbeth, which is in the pre-production stage. He is also about to start work on Little Things, with Rami Malek.

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Designers and models slam Alabama’s controversial anti-abortion law

Top fashion designers and models are among those slamming Alabama’s new anti-abortion law.Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed into law the controversial bill on Wednesday evening, after senators from the U.S. State passed the bill late the previous day, w…

Top fashion designers and models are among those slamming Alabama’s new anti-abortion law.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed into law the controversial bill on Wednesday evening, after senators from the U.S. State passed the bill late the previous day, with the law only allowing for terminations of ectopic pregnancy, if the unborn child has a “lethal anomaly” or to “avoid a serious health risk to the unborn child’s mother”.

Under the legislation, doctors who perform abortions may face life in prison, and while Democrats attempted to re-introduce an amendment to exempt rape and incest victims, they were unsuccessful – with a number of members of the fashion community now speaking out over the divisive law.

Taking to Instagram, Zac Posen uploaded a picture of a poster with the words, “Abortion is a personal decision, not a legal debate,” and in the caption wrote, “Deeply shocked and disappointed by Alabama criminalising abortion. I know from my mother what it was like for women before Roe v. Wade. Women’s rights are human rights. Let’s move forward, not backwards.”

In her statement, Ivey commented that she was aware the new law may be unenforceable due to the Supreme Court’s landmark Roe v Wade decision in 1973 which legalised abortion in all 50 states, but insisted that the new regulation was passed with the aim of challenging that law.

Elsewhere, luxury footwear designer Brian Atwood shared vintage images of women fighting for the right to have abortions and added, “Total BS!!! Alabama wake the f**k up! We will not stand for this!!!! Men will not govern a woman’s body!!!!”

While model Bella Hadid reposted a comment on the issue penned by artist Petra Collins, and Hailey Bieber shared a Twitter user’s post on her Instagram Stories in which they pointed out that the 22 Alabama senators who voted for the bill were all male.

Other A-listers including Lady Gaga, Alyssa Milano, Sarah Silverman, Ava DuVernay, Chris Evans, and Padma Lakshmi have all spoken out over the law too.

The bill will not take effect for six months after becoming law.

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