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#Oscars2018 Foreign-Language Film: Today, September 26, submission from Canada.
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Thursday, June 29, 2017

2017 Invitation to Join AMPAS


Yesterday the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) announced is extending 774 invitations to join the organization and because there are some people I was very positively impressed they were invited, as well as was utterly impressed Kristen Stewart is not a member as of this moment (!!!), I'm doing this post with comments and to list some of the people invited a couple of Academy Branches.

On the interesting side of AMPAS list there are 30 individuals that have been invited by multiple branches, but they have to select only one branch upon accepting membership.  Besides having to pay their financial dues, new members will be welcomed into the Academy at invitation-only receptions in the fall - meaning Oscar Season.

But the irreverent perhaps is more juicy as almost all industry magazines today have articles that highlight the "many" TV actors invited to join the Academy.  To be honest, that's what called my attention and made me read the list of actors paying more attention than the usual.  Then the other much abuzz is diversity as the institution tries not to fix the industry but is trying to fix itself by asking younger individuals, more female, increase race diversity, etc. and from my perspective, open to the world of cinema it leads no matter what anyone says and well, the 774 new members will come from 57 countries (if all accept).  By-the-way it is a record as is the first time the organization has extended that many invitations (until 2015 were in the 300 range, 2016 doubled to 600 range).

Then you have the inevitable, those that claim that with these invitations the Academy is lowering its standards.  Seems some believe that to be invited the individual has to do remarkable work as otherwise is not worthy of becoming a member.  Will not comment much, but that's the kind of conversation that should not exist in any organization much less in a cinema-related institution where there is a huge stretch between bad-good and who is the good-credentials one to say which work belongs to which side of the scale.  Sigh.

As finished reading the list do notice that there are lots of women invited, with some branches inviting more women than men (which is notorious but unavoidable as most of its members are male) and yes, there are a lot of American TV actors but all have made movies, many made blockbuster movies, some indies and others studio movies; but no doubt that all have acted in movies and probably are SAG members (lol!).

Seems the youngest individual invited this year is 19-years-old Elle Fanning and the oldest is none other than 95-years-old Betty White (she has been in about 7 films).  Among the individuals honored with an invitation there are three married couples: Anna Faris and Chirs Pratt, Carina Lau and Tony Leung, plus Adele Romanski and James Laxton; a Father and Daughter-In-Law: Amitabh Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan; and two sisters, Debbie Allen and Phylicia Rashad.  Also noticeable are the many Bollywood actors invited, but what it's quite "funny" is the movies they're attached as seems someone was not allowed to list the many (some in the hundreds)  Bollywood movies they are in (lol!).

In case you do not recall, all 2017 Oscar nominees that were not Academy members receive an invitation; so you have to discount from large list, around 96 individuals that got 112 nominations from which 24 individuals went to win 25 Oscars.

There is a crucial fact many seem to be forgetting and is VERY IMPORTANT.  Individuals have to accept the invitation otherwise they will  not be Academy members.  Perhaps the most notorious case this year is Viggo Mortensen who was invited before but declined; still, seems this time he will accept as has been told by some industry reports.

Here are some of the individuals that received an invitation.

Actors (105)
A (3)
Riz Ahmed
Debbie Allen
Elena Anaya
B (6)
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Amitabh Bachchan
Monica Bellucci
Gilm Birmingham
Nazanin Boniadi
Daniel Brühl
C (5)
Maggie Cheung
John Cho
Priyanka Chopra
Matt Craven
Terry Crews
D (3)
Warwick Davis
Coman Domingo
Adam Driver
E (3)
Joel Edgerton
Chris Evans
Luke Evans
F (7)
Fan Bingbing
Elle Fanning
Golshifteh Farahani
Anna Faris
Tom Felton
Rebecca Ferguson
Lou Ferrigno
G (10)
Gal Gadot
Charlotte Gainsbourg
Jeff Garlin
Spencer Garrett
Domhnall Gleeson
Sharon Gless
Donald Glover
Judy Greer
Rupert Grint
Noel Gugliemi
H (11)
John Hamm
Arnie Hammer
Naomi Harris
Leila Hatami
Anne Heche
Lucas Hedges
Chris Hemsworth
Ciaran Hinds
Aldis Hodge
Bryce Dallas Howard
Bonnie Hunt
J (3)
Jian Wen
Dwayne Johnson
Leslie Jones
K (6)
Keegan-Michael Key
Aamir Khan
Irrfan Khan
Salman Khan
Rinko Kikuchi
Zoë Kravitz
L (3)
Sanaa Lathan
Carina Lau
Tony Leung
M (7)
Rami Malek
Leslie Mann
Kate Mckinnon
Sienna Miller
Janelle Monáe
Michelle Monaghan
Vigo Mortensen
N (2)
Ruth Negga
Franco Nero
O (1)
Elizabeth Olsen
P (5)
Deepika Padukone
Sarah Paulson
Robert Picardo
Amy Poehler
Chris Pratt
Q (1)
Zachary Quinto
R (4)
Edgar Ramirez
Phylicia Rashad
Margot Robbie
Maya Rudolph
S (12)
Hiroyuki Sanada
Henry G. Sanders
Rodrigo Santoro
Rade Šerbedžija
Nestor Serrano
Amanda Seyfried
Molly Shannon
Ana Deavere Smith
Hailee Steinfeld
Kristen Stewart
Omar Sy
Wanda Sykes
T (4)
Channing Tatum
Aaron Taylor-Johnson
Lauren Tom
Jeanne Tripplehorn
V (1)
Paz Vega
W (7)
Dee Wallace
Ming-Na Wen
Betty White
Rebel Wilson
Mary Elizabeth Winstead
B.D. Wong
Shailene Woodley
Y (1)
Donnie Yen

There is no doubt that the most interesting list belongs to the directors branch as has some outstanding filmmakers that absolutely deserve the honor of belonging to the so-called American Academy but undoubtedly is becoming more and more open to the incredibly good World Cinema. Still, wonder if some of the below directors will accept or decline the invitation as can't imagine them being active in such mundane Oscar duties (lol!).

List includes amazing filmmakers like Vietnam's Tran Anh Hung (remember awesome The Scent of Green Papaya?), Chile's Pablo Trapero and Alejandro Jodorowsky, Mexico's Amat Escalante, Philippines' Brillante Mendoza and Lav Diaz, Greece's Athina Rachel Tsangari, Australia's Cate Shortland and Garth Davis, South Korea's Kim Ki-duk, Portugal's Pedro Costa, France's Emmanuelle Bercot, Germany's Fatih Akin, Austria's Jessica Hausner, Hong Kong's Ann Hui and Johnnie To, Japan's Takashi Miike, Israel's Eran Riklis, Mexico's Arturo Ripstein, Denmark's Martin Zandvliet, Netherlands' Paula van der Oest and more.

Directors (64)
A-E (20)
Fatih Akin
Adolfo Aristarain
David Ayer
Nabil Ayouch
Siddiq Barmak
Aida Begić
Emmanuelle Bercot
Martin Butler
Patricia Cardoso
Peter Ho-Sun Chan
Derek Cianfrance
Pedro Costa
Garth Davis
Bentley Dean
Lav Diaz
Carlos Diegues
Nelson Pereira dos Santos
Nana Dzhordzhadze
Ildikó Enyedi
Amat Escalane
F-L (13)
Safi Faye
Tom Ford
Goutam Ghose
Jessica Hausner
Joanna Hogg
Hannes Holm
Ann Hui
Christine Jeffs
Barry Jenkins
Alejandro Jodorowsky
Kim Ki-duk
Zacharias Kunuk
Mohammed Lakhdar-Hania
M-P (13)
David Mackenzie
Sharon Maguire
Theodore Melfi
Kleber Mendonça Filho
Brillante Mendoza
Marta Meszaros
Takashi Miike
Orlando Montiel
Jocelyn Moorhouse
Kira Muratova
Hector Olivera
Idrissa Ouedraogo
Jordan Peele
R-Z (18)
Mohammad Rasoulof
Eran Riklis
Arturo Ripstein
Guy Ritchie
Antony Russo
Joseph Russo
Mrinal Sen
Cate Shortland
Peter Sollett
Juan Carlos Tabío
Rawson Marshall Thurber
Johnnie To
Tran Ang Hung
Pablo Trapero
Athina Rachel Tsangari
Paula van der Oest
Susanna White
Martin Zandvliet

Worth mentioning are two well-known musicians, lyricist, singers: Justin Timberlake and Lin-Manuel Miranda; but no doubt the most interesting in the Music branch is Justin Hurwitz with his work in La La Land and Whiplash. Last, best news come from the Writers branch as Céline Sciamma has been invited to join them; it's good news but honestly would have even better if she was invited to join the Director's branch.

To read the complete list that includes some of the films each individual is related to go official site here, file is a pdf.

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