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5 Shocking Statistics about Gender Inequity and Academy Awards

5 Shocking Statistics about Gender Inequity and Academy Awards

It’s no coincidence that those gold Oscar statuettes depict a man. After all, only 16% of all Oscar nominees (since the awards were given out in 1928) have been women. After conducting an in-depth breakdown by gender of Oscar nominees from 1928-2013 including “Acting” categories, Silk, a platform for sharing information and data visualizations, discovered some shocking information about gender inequity at the Oscars.

We recently wrote about the Diversity Gap at the Oscars and, by now, we’re used to seeing depressing statistics, but some of these findings are shockers. To be clear, we’re not blaming the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences for these figures. The numbers point to a larger systematic problem in the industry where white men have traditionally called the shots.

Women are dramatically underrepresented in cinematography and directing. The only area where women surpass men in terms of representation is Costume Design.

“Women’s presence remains strong primarily in categories stereotypically associated with them: in Costume Design and Makeup & Hairstyling women constitute 40% of the nominees. In the category Best Production Design (formerly Art Direction) for the 86th Oscars women hold 7 of the 11 candidate slots,” according to the report.

You can read Silk’s report here.

Here are the most shocking statistics about gender inequity at the Academy Awards:

1. The highest percentage of female nominees was in 1994 at 26% — and it immediately dropped to 16% the following year.

2. The highest percentage of female winners was in 1929.

3. There has never been a female nominated for Best Cinematography.

4. Only four women have been nominated for Best Director and only one woman has won (Kathryn Bigelow for “The Hurt Locker”)

5. Since 1928, only six female candidates have been nominated for Special/Visual/Engineering Effects

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Don V

The presumtive fact that only 10% of the people enrolled in film school in the 90’s where women, is somehow evidence of gender inequality and sexism is not a conclusion that can be drawn from this fact. More information would be needed to determine why females did not select this path. Men are more prevelant in trade school enrollment for careers like carpentry, iron working, etc. Is this evidence of gender inequality or do these careers appeal less to young women?

Diane Kingsley

No. This has everything to do with gender inequality. Like you said, less than 10% of women in film school were women, so there is obvious gender inequality from the beginning and its not hard to imagine why. The sexism in the industry is incredibly blunt and since over 90% of the execs of Hollywood are male, there’s nothing being done to cover it up or to fix it.

Lately, numbers of female directors has been on an upwards trend! I can’t wait to see more women calling the shots in Hollywood!

Javier Liberman

It´s simple statistics and has little to do with gender inequity. Get the statistic of the men to women ratio in film schools and you will have a better idea of why the numbers presented in this article came to be. Or better yet, get the numbers of film schools in the early 90´s (to account for the working professionals nowdays.) I went to film school (90-94) and out of 300 students less than 10% were women. It is that simple.

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