A new study released Monday indicated that an actress playing a
leading role in a drama movie has more chances to be nominated for
an Academy Award than a male comedian.
According to the study by researchers from UCLA and Harvard
University, comedic artists have a tougher time when it comes to
getting an Oscar nomination than do dramatic actors.
The 80th annual Academy Awards nominations are scheduled to be
announced here Tuesday by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and
Sciences, which hands out the awards.
Actresses stand a better chance of being recognized by Oscars
because there are fewer female than male performers in films, and
both are eligible for the same number of awards, explained Nicole
Esparza of Harvard, the study's lead author.
"The odds of being nominated for an Academy Award are so much
greater for performers who appear in dramas that -- at least at
this time of year -- it really pays to be a drama queen," said
Gabriel Rossman, an assistant professor of sociology at UCLA, who
is another author of the study.
Rossman said that there has long been a sense in the
entertainment industry that the nominations process prefers dramas,
but few people are aware of the magnitude of the effect.
The study used records of every Oscar-eligible film between the
1927 founding of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
and 2005, including a total of 1,394 nominations.
The researchers found that actors, male or female, were nine
times more likely to receive an Academy Award nomination in a drama
than for a non-drama.
Other pluses include having a major film distributor, previous
Oscar nominations, a high spot in the lists of past movie credits
and having fewer films competing for attention, according to the
"It's surprising how many variables other than a performer's
talent play a role in determining who gets nominated," said
(Xinhua News Agency January 22, 2008)