Steven Yeun and Emerald Fennell among latest invited to be Academy members

Minari star Steven Yeun, Promising Young Woman actor Laverne Cox and writer-director Emerald Fennell are among the 395 names invited to be Academy members this year.

The annual list, down in size from usual years (last year saw 819 invites), represents another step forward for the group with regards to diversity. The names included are 46% female and 39% from under-represented racial groups.

“To enable steady future growth and to ensure the necessary infrastructure, staff resources and environment to support all Academy members, the number invited to membership was limited to roughly half that of recent years,” the Academy said in a statement.

The list is also 53% international with 49 countries outside of the US represented. Other names on the list include forthcoming Batman Robert Pattinson, recent Oscar nominees Andra Day, Vanessa Kirby, Leslie Odom Jr and Mara Bakalova, Insecure star and creator Issa Rae, recent Oscar winner Yuh-Jung Youn, Under the Skin director Jonathan Glazer, singers Janet Jackson and HER and Zola film-maker Janicza Bravo.

Those invited now have to accept in order to become part of the almost 10,000-strong group.

This year’s Oscars saw historic wins for Daniel Kaluuya as the first British black actor to win, Youn as the first Korean acting winner and Chloé Zhao as the first woman of colour to win best director. Zhao’s drama Nomadland was also named best picture. In line with dwindling ratings for the Golden Globes and Grammys, the Oscars also saw a steep decline, dropping 58% year-on-year to a new record low.

This week also saw the Academy officially approving new changes to next year’s awards. From now on, the list of best pictures will be set at 10 rather than the recent rule that nominees can end up being anywhere between five and 10. Also no more than five songs a film may be entered for consideration.

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