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5 Shocking Statistics about Gender Inequity and Academy Awards

Photo of Paula Bernstein By Paula Bernstein | Indiewire February 27, 2014 at 12:56PM

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.
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Kathryn Bigelow

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

This article is related to: Awards Season Roundup, Women's issues, Women's issues, Academy Awards, Academy Awards, Diversity, Gender Equality







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