Christina Ricci is abuzz with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revisiting Oscar campaigns following “To Leslie” star Andrea Riseborough’s surprise Best Actress nomination.
“Yellowjackets” and “Wednesday” star Ricci wrote on Instagram that Riseborough’s “legitimately brilliant performance” is being undermined by an “elitist” investigation.
“Seems hilarious that the ‘surprise nomination’ (meaning tons of money wasn’t spent to position this actress) of a legitimately brilliant performance is being met with an investigation,” Ricci wrote (via The Independent). “So it’s only the films and actors that can afford the campaigns that deserve recognition? Feels elitist and exclusive and frankly very backward to me.”
Ricci noted that Riseborough’s Oscar nomination “will be tainted by this” investigation, and added that she has “nothing to do with the campaigning” by speaking out.
“If it’s taken away, shame on them,” Ricci said of the possibility that Riseborough’s nomination could be rescinded.
“To Leslie,” in which Riseborough plays an alcoholic and former lottery winner, made $27,000 in theaters, making it among the lowest-grossing films to ever receive an Oscar nomination. A-listers like Gwyneth Paltrow, Cate Blanchett, Kate Winslet, Charlize Theron, Amy Adams, Jennifer Aniston, Sarah Paulson, Edward Norton, and Jane Fonda publicly supported Riseborough’s grassroots campaign to land a Best Actress Oscar nomination.
“Infinity Pool” helmer Brandon Cronenberg, who directed Riseborough in “Possessor,” told IndieWire that the Academy Awards are “subjective and deeply political” but finally are recognizing Riseborough as “one of the best working actresses right now.”
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences launched an investigation into this year’s nominees, announcing, “It is the Academy’s goal to ensure that the Awards competition is conducted in a fair and ethical manner, and we are committed to ensuring an inclusive awards process.”
The “To Leslie” team directly emailed Academy members to lobby for the film’s inclusion on the ballot, and reports of Instagram campaigns have also been cited. However, neither tactic is distinctly against Academy voter rules.
The statement continued, “We are conducting a review of the campaign procedures around this year’s nominees, to ensure that no guidelines were violated, and to inform us whether changes to the guidelines may be needed in a new era of social media and digital communication. We have confidence in the integrity of our nomination and voting procedures, and support genuine grassroots campaigns for outstanding performances.”
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