Just to underline I didn’t say anything to Guardian interviewer Rory Carroll about “most Academy voters [being] happy to preserve the status quo.” Maybe they are but I didn’t address it. I reiterated my long-held view that the Academy needs overhauling, and once again pushed the idea of “weighting Academy votes so that those cast by people currently working in film carried more sway than those of people who retired years or decades ago,” as Carroll conveyed it.
Excerpt #1: “Jeffrey Wells, a veteran Los Angeles-based film blogger, said others shared his view that the NWA biopic Straight Outta Compton and Michael B. Jordan’s’ performance in Creed, for instance, were not Oscar-worthy but that few would say so publicly.
“’Anyone who is accomplished enough to be an Academy member knows how the game is played. They’re not stupid and so they will duck their heads to not be tarred and feathered for having (supposed) racist attitudes.’
“The media [are] equally skittish, said Wells. ‘Nothing terrifies them so much as being seen as being insensitive so they go along with it. No one stands up and says such and such isn’t worthy.’
Excerpt #2: “The blogger said Straight Outta Compton and Creed, which was directed by Ryan Coogler, were well-made crowd-pleasers but lacked ‘refinement’.
“Wells agreed the Academy needed an overhaul, saying that it was right to ignore Straight Outta Compton and Creed but betrayed ‘racist attitudes’ in snubbing Idris Elba and Beasts of No Nation, an important film about conflict in Africa which presented a world alien to Academy voters. Another reason for the snub, he said, was that it was made by Netflix.” — again, a link to Carroll’s Guardian article, which popped early this morning.