Kobe Bryant barred entry into Oscar academy

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Los Angeles, June 21 (IANS) Retired NBA star Kobe Bryant, who won an Oscar for his and director Glen Keanes animated short film “Dear Basketball”, has been denied entry into the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Individuals who win an Academy Award or are nominated for one are often considered for inclusion in the organisation, which numbered more than 8,000 members at the most recent count.

Bryant was considered as well, and the Academy’s Short Films and Feature Animation branch actually voted in the affirmative to admit him into the branch.

However, the Academy’s governors committee overruled the decision and rescinded the invitation, reports variety.com.

Though the branch, through governor Bill Kroyer, argued that Bryant has expressed a desire to work in the short films space, the committee felt the Los Angeles Lakers legend needed to show evidence of a larger career in the field before being allowed to represent it as a member of the organisation.

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The Academy has been criticised of late for a perceived lowering of standards in its increasingly robust invite lists, which have been bullish on inclusion and diversity following a few years of #OscarsSoWhite controversy.

Some have argued that a number of recent invitees have not amassed a career deserving of an Academy invite, but this marks a rather high-profile example of the organisation, at least outwardly, maintaining a focus on those standards, regardless of celebrity.



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