African American-Female Nominee for Editing… FINALLY.

Remember when the Oscars were all white in 2016? Well this upcoming Oscar season is going to show up last. Already up for several awards, Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight (2016) is a story of self-discovery for a young African-American man. With all the hype of the film, thus far, it should do fairly well during award season…yet competing with La La Land (2016) is another story.

Photo by David Bornfriend, courtesy of A24
Along with it’s content, Moonlight was also nominated under the best editing category. I did not think much on this until I saw this article talking about the first nomination for an African-American woman in post. Two thoughts come to mind – How?  And Finally! I never realized how non-diversified the role of post-production was – not to say that films don’t have to start to diversifying a lot of other roles in the industry. Joi McMillon, editor of Moonlight, worked on this project with a lot of passion to peel the layers and emotions of this film. McMillon puts a lot praise on Jenkins and the actors that dove into a pure relationship on the screen.

McMillon goes on to say, “I’m watching the dailies, and it’s so intimate. So, for me, I was paying attention to how it’s been so long and how these two people are finally connecting. How terrifying and exciting that can be,” – leading to the subtext of this work. Films that have this high emotional value would be nothing without their editors, who target the audience with what they choose to show you, and what they don’t.


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