Dan Jinks is the Oscar-winning producer of American Beauty who is also a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He wanted to write this for Deadline ahead of tomorrow morning’s Oscar nominations.
Tomorrow morning the nominations for the Academy Awards will be announced. There will be dozens of people celebrating all over Hollywood, New York, and, indeed, the world upon hearing their names read out loud at around 5:40 AM PST. Many deserving films and performances will be nominated. And, as always, there will be some grumbling about a favorite actor or sound designer or editor who didn’t get nominated. That is always the case. But no one will be snubbed. Perhaps a particular performance received the sixth most votes in their category. Many Academy members loved their work and voted for it, but not quite enough to make the top five. But they were not snubbed. They just didn’t receive enough votes to get a nomination.
There are now more than 8000 members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. I think I can speak for the vast majority of us when I say that I consider it an honor to be a member. I take my membership very seriously. I see a lot of movies throughout the year, but in November and December I sometimes see five or six movies a week. This is never a chore. I love movies. Yes, it’s sometimes tough to keep up with the vast number of movies that members of the Academy are asked to see, but what a great problem to have.
While Academy members might discuss with friends what our favorites are, voting itself is done in private. We all nominate who we feel is most deserving. No one snubs anyone. To say that there was a snub implies that as a group we get together and decide to vote this way or that.
I looked up the word snub in the dictionary. One of the definitions is “To treat with contempt or neglect.” No one wants to be snubbed, and no one wants to hear that they’ve been treated with contempt or neglect. Yes, there are years that a deserving performance might be overlooked because a film didn’t get enough attention and not enough members got to see it, but that is rare. Every year there are nominated performances from movies that much of the country has never heard of. Academy members see a lot of movies, and we vote with our hearts and minds.
Tomorrow, let’s celebrate everyone who is nominated. And, sure, journalists will point out who they expected to get nominated and wasn’t. But let’s not call it a snub.