Oscars push for diversity extends to Board of Governors election

On Wednesday, the motion picture academy announced the names of those 683 people who have been invited to join the 6,200 strong organization. However, those who accept this invitation won’t be eligible to cast a ballot in the Board of Governors election. Voting begins on Wednesday (June 29) and concludes on July 12.

Each of the 17 branches of the academy is represented by three governors who serve three-year terms. Those terms are staggered such that one governor from each branch is up for re-election each year. And no governor may serve for more than nine uninterrupted years. In the spring, the academy added three at-large governors, nominated by the president and appointed by the board.

Of the record 18 women on the current board of governors, seven were up for re-election. Of these, two are not in the running — director Kathryn Bigelow, who opted not to run again and film editor Lynzee Klingman, who did not make the final four as determined by the branch executive committee — but other women have entered those races. The five female governors on the ballot are: costumer Judianna Makovsky (who faces off against three women); designer Jan Pascale (up against one woman), executive Amy Pascal, PR wiz Nancy Utley, and writer Robin Swicord.

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Women are also running for seats in eight of the other branches. Were they all to win, women would represent 24 of the 54 governors. Just four years ago, women numbered only nine of the then 43 governors. Since 2012, the Art Directors branch was split into Designers and Costume Designers branches with three governors apiece, Makeup Artists and Hairstylists Branch went from one to three governors, the Casting Directors branch was created and the At-Large governors were added.

Eleven of the 17 branches have sitting governors battling to keep their seats. Another three — Music, Sound and Visual Effects — have wide-open races due to term limits. Two — Directors and Documentary — have governors not seeking re-election while the Film Editing governor did not make the cut.

Oscars invite record 683 new members in push for diversity but overall numbers still lagging

Among those facing the fiercest fights are Ed Begley, Jr. (Actors), Pascal (Executives) and Mark Johnson (Producers). And the starry Director race includes Oscar favorite Steven Spielberg and indie darling Lisa Choldokenko.

Actors: Those squaring off against Begley are past Oscar nominees Laura Dern and Edward James Olmos as well as Lou Diamond Phillips.

Directors: Choldokenko, who lost her bid for re-election in 2014 to Edward Zwick, is hoping to return to the board. She had only served two years, rather than the standard three, as she replaced Paul Mazursky when he stepped down after one year in 2012. She faces off against Spielberg, John Badham and Thomas Carter.

Executive: Pascal, the former chair of Sony Studios, faces a trio of fellows – Bill Mechanic, Mike Medavoy and Peter Schlessel.

Producers: Hawk Koch, who served one-year as academy president before term limits forced him off the board in 2013, is hoping to unseat Johnson, who oversaw 1988 Best Picture champ “Rain Man.” Also in that race are Stephanie Allain and Paula Wagner.

Below, the breakdown of the governors, both sitting and up for re-election, across all 17 branches of the academy. (Former governors seeking to return to the board are noted in italics.)

Actors
Annette Bening
Ed Begley, Jr. – up for re-election: vs. Laura Dern, Edward James Olmos, Lou Diamond Phillips
Tom Hanks

Casting Directors
Lora Kennedy
David Rubin — up for re-election: vs. Deborah Aquila, Kerry Barden, Ilene Starger
Bernard Telsey

Cinematographers
John Bailey – up for re-election: vs. Michael Goi, Nancy Schreiber and Mandy Walker
Caleb Deschanel
Daryn Okada

Costume Designers
Judianna Makovsky – up for re-election: vs. Sharen K. Davis, Ellen Mirojnick and Marilyn Vance
Jeffrey Kurland
Deborah Nadoolman Landis

Designers
Jim Bissell
Rick Carter
Jan Pascale – up for re-election: vs. Jennifer Willams

Directors
Kathryn Bigelow – not running: John Badham, Thomas Carter, Lisa Cholodenko, Steven Spielberg
Michael Mann
Edward Zwick

Documentary
Kate Amend
Rob Epstein
Alex Gibney -not running: Michael Apted, Rob Epstein, Liz Garbus, Roger Ross Williams

Executives
Daniel Fellman
Jim Gianopulos
Amy Pascal – up for re-election: Bill Mechanic, Mike Medavoy, Peter Schlessel

Film Editors
Carol Littleton
Lynzee Klingman – didn’t make cut: Maryann Brandon, Richard Chew, Mark Goldblatt, Alan Heim
Michael Tronick

Makeup Artists and Hairstylists
Kathryn Blondell
Lois Burwell
Bill Corso – up for re-election: Howard Berger, Leonard Engelman, Donald Mowat

Music
Charles Bernstein
Charles Fox – vacating due to term limit: Alan Bergman, Carter Burwell, Arthur Hamilton, Laura Karpman
Michael Giacchino

Producers
Albert Berger
Mark Johnson – up for re-election: vs. Stephanie Allain, Hawk Koch, Paula Wagner
Kathleen Kennedy

Public Relations
Cheryl Boone Isaacs
Marvin Levy
Nancy Utley – up for re-election: vs. Tony Angellotti, Bruce Feldman, Rob Friedman

Short Films and Feature Animation
Jon Bloom – up for re-election: vs. Ron Diamond, Eric Goldberg, Bob Kurtz
Bill Kroyer
Bob Rogers

Sound
Curt Behlmer – vacating due to term limit; Richard Branca, Kevin Collier, David W. Gray, Douglas Greenfield
Mark Mangini
Scott Millans

Visual Effects
Richard Edlund
John Knoll
Bill Taylor -vacating due to term limit; Craig Barron, Edwin Catmull, Michael L. Fink, Theresa Ellis Rygiel

Writers
Billy Ray
Phil Robinson
Robin Swicord – up for re-election: vs. James L. Brooks, Larry Karaszweski, James Schamus

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