All the Women Directors Who Could Be Nominated for Oscars This Year

Photo Courtesy: Amazon Studios

Women directors’ history with the Oscars is fraught with missed opportunities. Only five women have ever been nominated in the best director category: Lina Wertmüller (Seven Beauties, 1977), Jane Campion (The Piano, 1994), Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation, 2004), Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker, 2010) and Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird, 2018). Bigelow is the only woman to have won an Academy Award as a director.

Of course, the Oscars aren’t the only Hollywood-adjacent instance of the imbalance between female and male directors. According to a report from the educational initiative Women and Hollywood, women made up for 51% of moviegoers in 2018. Yet only 10.7% of the directors from the 100 grossing films of 2019 were women.

Things are slowly starting to change after Hollywood has been facing pressure over its lack of inclusion and diversity, but there’s still a long way to go. And that’s evident when considering the small number of women directors who’ve been recognized with one of the most distinguished distinctions in the profession.

Even last year, when awareness of the importance of heterogeneity was already a key part of the zeitgeist, the Academy managed to rebuff women directors once again, most notably with the absences of Lulu Wang for The Farewell and Gerwig for Little Women among the nominees. Although Gerwig did receive a nomination in the Best Adapted Screenplay for Little Women, The Washington Post and other outlets acknowledged this as a "snub"

But could things start to really change this year? The conversation about two women, in particular, is gaining momentum, leading many to wonder whether women directors will finally earn some well-deserved recognition from the Academy.