One night at dinner, a family member asked me about the Kathryn Bigelow "Oscar snub." I'm still reading entertainment articles and hearing reports about her being "snubbed" by the Academy Awards because she didn't get a Best Director nomination for Zero Dark Thirty, which is nominated for Best Picture. That same applies to Ben Affleck, who directed fellow Best Picture nominee, Argo. But I've noticed that entertainment journalists and bloggers haven't called Quentin Tarantino "snubbed" for Django Unchained and Tom Hopper "snubbed" for Les Misérables. They're up for the Best Picture Oscar but the men behind the camera are not up for Best Director. For one thing, we can have up to ten nominees for Best Picture again. There are five nominees for Best Director. Starting with the Oscars for 1944, the number of Best Picture nominees was reduced from ten to five. Ingrid Bergman won Best Actress for Gaslight, directed by George Cukor. The psychological thriller earned Charles Boyer a Best Actor nomination.
That's just the way the Academy is. When he was promoting Conspiracy Theory, I asked Mel Gibson about that. He won what filmmakers Buster Keaton, Howard Hawks, Ernst Lubitsch, Preston Sturges and Alfred Hitchcock never did -- an Oscar for Best Director. (Keaton and Sturges weren't ever even nominated in that category.) Gibson won for Braveheart. He took home another Oscar for producing it, Best Picture of 1995.
My point is -- I think entertainment journalists are making too much of this Kathryn Bigelow and Ben Affleck Best Director Oscar nomination snub. That kind of exclusion has been happening for over half a century in Academy Awards history. Maybe they should ask what I asked Mel Gibson -- if the Academy should consider changing the rule for Best Director nominees. That might make for a fresher angle on the story. Just a thought.