HomeBad Ass AsiansDev Patel, Moana Net Oscar Nominations

Dev Patel, Moana Net Oscar Nominations

Dev Patel
Dev Patel at the Toronto Film Festival in 2016

By Louis Chan
AsAmNews National Correspondent

#OscarsSoWhite, hopefully no more.

The Oscar nominations came out today with six Black actors garnering nominations, the most in Oscar history. After huge uproars two years in a row about the lack of diversity at the Academy Awards, this was a refreshing change.

Asian American Pacific Islanders were also among the honored.

Dev Patel snagged a Best Supporting Actor nomination for his role as Saroo Brierley in Lion which stars Nicole Kidman and Rooney Mara. Patel portrays an Indian-born Australian businessman who goes in search for his birth mother 25 years later.

Patel, of course, came on the Hollywood scene in Slum Dog Millionaire, which won eight Academy Awards, but none for acting. Patel was not even nominated back then. He is just the third Indian actor and just the 13th Asian to ever receive a nomination.

Disney’s Moana received a nomination for best animated feature. The film garnered praise from some members of the Pacific Islander community for its cultural authenticity and for its extensive research into the Island culture. Others, however, condemned it for what they perceived as cultural appropriation. Disney also stumbled early when it released a brown skin Moana costume for Halloween and had to pull it from sale after charges of racism and insensitivity.

Moana was also nominated for best song for How Far I’ll Go, performed by Auli’i Cravalho, a 16-year Hawaiian actress making her Hollywood debut.

Kubo and the Two Strings won two nominations, for best visual effects and best animated feature. It starred George Takei, but was largely criticized for its lack of diversity for a film set in ancient Japan.

Justin Lin’s Star Trek Beyond was honored with a nomination for best make up and hair.

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