When asking about the Academy’s short-sighted decision to award four Oscars during the commercial breaks this year (and then airing a possibly condensed version of the winner’s speech later in the telecast), Guy Nattiv chooses his words carefully. He’s obviously disappointed, but it’s also apparent he doesn’t want to let all this affect him too much. After all, this is his first Oscar nomination and, right now, he should be having the time of his life. But, as someone actually nominated for an Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film for his work on Skin, the Academy’s decision does directly affect him.
“You know, it’s so fresh. I was in Berlin and just got the news about the whole nomination thing. I didn’t even digest that,” Nattiv told Uproxx. “I mean, yes, it’s all part of the journey. Of course, that being said, cinematography and editing, cinema doesn’t exist without that. I think it’s absurd, but I’m so still so honored.”
Since the Academy’s announcement that four categories would be awarded during commercial breaks – cinematography, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, and Nattiv’s category, live-action short – the response has been critical and swift. Numerous filmmakers have come out in opposition to the Academy’s decision.
“It’s important and I’m so grateful for their support,” says Nattiv. As we were speaking, Regina King, this year’s front runner for Best Supporting Actress for her work in If Beale Street Could Talk, made her dissent known.
I don’t like it. I don’t think that’s a cool deal. I’m an artist so I believe we’ve all worked really hard, we’ve nurtured our gifts and we should all be able to celebrate them with the world,” says Regina King, a nominee for best supporting actress. “It just doesn’t seem like 15 minutes is gonna make that big of a difference.”
After seeing that quote, Nattiv responded, “I’m going to see Regina King at a party soon and I’m going to thank her personally. I totally agree with her. What a quote. The support is amazing.”
This isn’t to say that the Academy’s controversial decision is completely getting in the way of Nattiv enjoying his Oscars experience, “We were at the event where all the nominees are doing this photo I’m standing there looking at my wife on the other side – they separate you – and I’m looking at her, telling her, ‘What? Are we here? Am I really a small part of these people?’ Then Laura Dern read our names. It was surreal.”