The US-based Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, the organisation behind the Oscars, has invited three Nigerian filmmakers to become members.
Funke Akindele Daniel K Daniel and Blessing Egbe are listed among 397 members for this year’s class.
Akindele was named in the actor category for her movies Omo Ghetto: The Saga and Jenifa; Daniel was also named in the actor category for his movies The Fugitive and A Soldier’s Story; and Egbe was named in the director category for her movies African Messiah and Iquo’s Journal.
According to the Academy, these filmmakers have distinguished themselves by their contributions to theatrical motion pictures and were selected based on professional qualifications, with an ongoing commitment to representation, inclusion and equity.
The Academy celebrates and recognises excellence in filmmaking through the Oscars. In 2021, Nigerian film and TV talent Mo Abudu, Ramsey Nouah and Andrew Dosunmu were invited to join.
The US Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has invited three more Nigerians to become members in an effort to include more people of different races and colour in the academy.
The move was a result of the uproar after the Academy’s 2015 Oscars ceremony when no people of colour, Hispanics or Asians were among the nominees. This year it invited 842 new members, half of them women and 29% coloured.
The new members of Nigerian descent are director Tunde Kelani, who is currently working on a film adaptation of Wole Soyinka’s novel The Lion & the Jewel; British-Nigerian actor Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, who has appeared in films such as The Bourne Identity and Thor: The Dark World; and Nigerian-American filmmaker Chinonye Chukwu, who became the first black woman to win the Sundance Film Festival’s biggest prize for her movie Clemency.
Last year Nigerian actress Omotola Jalade Ekeinde and filmmaker Femi Odugbemi were invited to join the academy.