Two years after #OscarsSoWhite, 2017 a record year for Black Nominees

| Updated: Jan 25, 2017 22:03 IST

Washington D.C. (USA) Jan.25 (ANI): For the past two years, Academy Awards have been poised by #OscarsSoWhite, with the frustration on how all the nominees were white. With people boycotting the Oscars last year, The Academy did seem to learn their lesson. With the record, six Black Actor nominees this year, all these wonderful actors really deserve to get this recognition and this is how they reacted when they heard about themselves getting nominated for Oscars. Octavia Spencer, the actress who has been nominated in 'Best Actor (Female)' category, for the movie 'Hidden Figures' told The Hollywood Reporter, "I was lying in bed, a nervous wreck, waiting for the phone call." Spencer, who already won an Oscar (in 2012, for 'The Help') later added, "A nomination is one of the biggest moments in a person's career and that's why I don't watch, or listen, to the announcement. I'm literally over the moon." For Viola Davis, recent years have been quite wonderful winning an Emmy Award for Best Actress (2012), a Critic's Choice Award for Best Supporting Actress (2016) and a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress, this year. She showed her excitement with these two lines, "Thank you to the Academy for recognizing this extraordinary, important film and my work in it. Thank you Denzel for being at the helm!" First-time Oscar nominee Naomie Harris, nominated for Best Supporting Actress for 'Moonlight', could not control her excitement and live-streamed the announcement of the nominees. The 40 year-old-actress told The Hollywood Reporter, "I'm in shock! My friend told me the nominations were being announced. I started to watch a bit of it and then I couldn't deal with the tension at all so I had to switch it off! And then I was just sitting there in fear and anticipation (laughs). And then my brother Matt called me to say, 'You're a nominee!' I'm just so thrilled because it's such a deserving movie. This is a movie that has the ability to really be transformative. It's such a beautiful, inspiring movie. For all of those reasons, I couldn't be more thrilled that it has been recognized in this way! Though she doesn't know how to celebrate this happy moment, she added, "I don't know how I'm going to celebrate because I was so preparing myself for different news. I really wasn't prepared for this at all!" Just like Naomie, his co-actor Mahershala Ali, who also got nominated in 'Best Supporting Actor' category, had just set his steps on the sets of his new movie, where he got the news of his first Oscar nomination for 'Moonlight' and said that he appreciates the Academy working really hard to diversify from #OscarsSoWhite controversy. The 'Moonlight' star told The Hollywood Reporter, "But I hope I wasn't nominated because I was black. That has no relevance. I hope I was nominated for my work." Ruth Negga, the star of movie 'Loving', who has been nominated for 'Best Actress in a Leading Role' for the same movie, felt truly humbled when she heard the news of her nomination. The 35 year-old-actress told The Hollywood Reporter, "I am truly humbled by the news this morning, and I thank the Academy for this recognition, which I share with my co-collaborators Jeff Nichols and Joel Edgerton. It has been such an honor to have been given the opportunity to tell the incredible story of Richard and Mildred Loving, who serve as an inspiration that ordinary people can do extraordinary things." Hollywood veteran, 'Denzel Washington', who has been nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role for the movie 'Fences', shared his thoughts by telling The Hollywood Reporter, "Thank you to the Academy for this wonderful recognition and for honoring August Wilson's brilliant words. I am just lucky to have been entrusted with this project and to have the chance to work with the amazing Viola Davis and the rest of my talented cast and crew." The actor has been nominated for his seventh Academy Award. (ANI)