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Oscars: Three Nigerians make Academy’s members list

Three Nigerians have made The Academy of Motion Picture, Arts and Sciences newly released list of 842 members.

They include the iconic filmmaker, Tunde Kelani, for directing; Hollywood star Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje for acting and the fast-rising Chinonye Chukwu for writing.

Mr Kelani, who is currently working on the film adaptation of Wole Soyinka’s award-winning novel, ‘The Lion and the Jewel’ is one of Nigeria’s most accomplished filmmakers.

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Mr Akinnuoye-Agbaje, on the other hand, has been on a steady rise, standing out in Hollywood films like ‘The Bourne Identity’, ‘Thor: The Dark World’, ‘Suicide Squad’ and ‘Game of Thrones”.

Ms Chukwu is the first black woman to win the Sundance Film Festival’s biggest prize for her movie, ‘Clemency’.

They will join actresses Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde and Wunmi Mosaku as well as film producer and directors Femi Odugbemi and Ngozi Onwurah who made the 2018 list.

The Academy, popularly known as the Oscars, published the list on its website.

The new list sees a visibly improved racial and gender considerations in the 2019 list that tops the 2018 list.

About 50 per cent of the new members are women and 29 per cent are people of colour.

This raises the percentage of women in the Academy from 31 to 32 per cent, while the percentage of people of colour remains at 16 per cent, the same as in 2018.

So far this year, there have been a few changes made by the organisation ahead of the 92nd Academy Awards in 2020.

In April, the Academy changed the name of the foreign-language film category to best international feature film and increased the number of nominated films in the makeup and hairstyling category from three to five.

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