No one was angrier than Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences CEO Dawn Hudson after the Oscar-night envelope fiasco. You could see steam coming out of her ears at the Governor’s Ball. After the #OscarsSoWhite controversy and several less-than-popular ABC Oscar telecasts, the 2017 edition produced by Michael De Luca and Jennifer Todd with host Jimmy Kimmel had — until the last possible moment — gone swimmingly.
But that momentary upswing was snatched away by two PricewaterhouseCoopers accountants who will never return to Hollywood & Highland. Amid internal debates about whether to fire the firm, the Board of Governors on March 28 voted for rule changes and to retain the venerable PwC, which has been counting votes and handing out envelopes for 83 years. And, as the Academy finally alerted their membership Monday night, Hudson will extend her six-year term as CEO, running the nonprofit staff of 350. She has renewed her lucrative contract worth some $705,000 a year until June 2020.
Hudson and popular Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs, an unpaid volunteer who is nearing the conclusion of her final term, may not always get along, but both deserve credit for pushing for a more inclusive global membership. And Hudson has another huge mountain to climb: she’ll continue to shepherd the slow-moving creation of the Academy Movie Museum (in partnership with L.A. County Museum of Art director Michael Govan), which still demands serious fundraising efforts to achieve its (delayed) completion by 2019.