The awards, which have come under fire in recent years for their lack of diversity amongst nominees and winners, have again raised some eyebrows with this year’s Supporting Actor nominees, as two actors from the same film are nominated.
Daniel Kaluuya and LaKeith Stanfield both star in Judas and the Black Messiah- a biographical drama that follows the story of Black Panther Party member Fred Hampton and an FBI informant William O’Neal who infiltrated the party, who they play respectively.
The nomination of both actors in the Supporting Actor category has left many puzzled as they believe Stanfield’s character of the FBI informant was the lead, with Kaluuya, the Black Panther Party member, in the supporting role.
In reply to The Academy’s tweet announcing the nomination, people directed their confusion and questioning.
Others believe the film is an ensemble piece in which two or more characters have equal weight, which may go some way in explaining the confusing supporting actor nomination.
But others disagreed as one user argued, “Every movie with more than two people isn’t an ensemble piece.”
Someone else highlighted how Warner Bros. Pictures, the company who released the film in the United States, campaigned for Stanfield to be nominated in the Best Actor category, with Kaluuya in the Supporting Actor category.
While it’s great to see more diversity in this year’s nominations, it is a shame neither of these talented men were given the opportunity to go up for the Best Actor award.