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Road to the Oscars 2024: Most women-helmed films ever nominated for Best Picture

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A momentous record was set when the nominations for the 96th annual Academy Awards were announced in January – three films directed by women were nominated for Best Picture, more in the same year than ever before.

Among the films nominated were Celine Song’s Past Lives, Greta Gerwig’s Barbie and Justine Triet’s Anatomy of a Fall.

This marks the fifth consecutive year that at least one film directed by a woman has been nominated for Best Picture. There have only ever been four previous years where more than one film directed by a woman has been included in the lineup – and there have never been more than two.

In 2009, Lone Scherfig and Kathryn Bigelow’s films An Education and The Hurt Locker were nominated; 2010 saw Lisa Cholodenko and Debra Granik’s movies The Kids Are All Right and Winter’s Bone get nods; 2020 found Chloé Zhao and Emerald Fennell’s films Nomadland and Promising Young Woman up for the award, while the following year saw Siân Heder and Jane Campion’s films CODA and The Power of the Dog nominated.

Gerwig also made history by becoming the first director – man or woman – to have all three of their solo-directed films nominated for Best Picture. Her slate includes Lady Bird, Little Women (2019) and Barbie.

Song reflected on her film’s two nominations – she also picked up a nod in the Best Original Screenplay category – with ABC Audio at the Oscar Nominees Luncheon on February 12.

“My favorite kind of feedback around Past Lives is when an audience member or somebody who has just seen the movie … comes up to me and says, ‘I actually I just wanted to tell you that, I needed this movie,'” Song said. “To have made a movie that somebody needs, like, what an incredible gift is that?”

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