Michelle Yeoh Instagram Post About Fellow Oscar Nominee Sparks Academy Rule Confusion, Debate
During the final hours of Oscars voting on Tuesday, “Everything Everywhere All at Once” nominee Michelle Yeoh caused a stir when snippets of a Vogue article were shared on her Instagram account.
Yeoh shared each paragraph in multiple images of the article titled — “It’s Been Over Two Decades Since We’ve Had a Non-White Best Actress Winner. Will That Change in 2023?” One of the slides references her fellow best actress nominee Cate Blanchett of “Tár.”
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“Detractors would say that Blanchett’s is the stronger performance — the acting veteran is, indisputably, incredible as the prolific conductor Lydia Tár — but it should be noted that she already has two Oscars (for best supporting actress for The Aviator in 2005, and best actress for Blue Jasmine in 2014). A third would perhaps confirm her status as an industry titan but, considering her expansive and unparalleled body of work, are we still in need of yet more confirmation?”
The blurb continues: “Meanwhile, for Yeoh, an Oscar would be life-changing: her name would forever be preceded by the phrase ‘Academy Award winner,’ and it should result in her getting meatier parts, after a decade of being criminally underused in Hollywood.”
Yeoh has since deleted her Instagram post.
Social media users were claiming the post could be a violation of the Academy’s rules, particularly No. 11 titled “References to Other Nominees.” It states that “any tactic that singles out ‘the competition’ by name or title is expressly forbidden.”
This occurrence resembles the Andrea Riseborough controversy following her surprise Oscar nomination for “To Leslie.” One of the reported aggressive tactics questioned during the Academy’s review was an Instagram post on the “To Leslie” official account that was also deleted and coincidentally also referenced Blanchett.
The Academy determined that the activity did not rise to the level of the film’s nomination being rescinded. Still, Academy CEO Bill Kramer shared in a statement that social media tactics “caused concern.”
If Riseborough’s camp didn’t face consequences for their possible violations that remain unclear via the Academy’s rules and regulations, Yeoh should rest easy before the 95th ceremony on Sunday, where many pundits are expecting a historic victory. Yeoh could become the second woman of color, and first Asian person, to win lead actress. “Everything Everywhere All at Once” leads all films with 11 nominations and is considered the front-runner for best picture.
The Academy is expected to review and possibly revise its policies regarding social media, which were created prior to the boom of Instagram, TikTok and other platforms.
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