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Once Again, Africa “Missing” at the Oscars! Winners & Red Carpet Photos from the 84th Academy Awards



If there was a theme at this year’s Oscars, it seems as though it was “vintage”.

We had  Hollywood veteran and seasoned Oscar host Billy Crystal back on the Academy Awards stage; Legendary actor Christopher Plummer won the supporting actor prize at the grand old age of 82 – entering the record books as the oldest ever Academy Award acting prize winner. Octavia Spencer won the Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her stellar performance in 1960s based “The Help“. We can’t forget Meryl Streep‘s triumphant moment as she picked up her third Academy Award, her first since the 1980s.

To sum it all up, a black and white silent movie “The Artist” won the major awards including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor in a Leading Role.

When the nominees were announced a few months ago, we were hopeful that an African film or actor would make the list but it wasn’t to be. What’s holding African cinema back from the international stage?

84th Academy Award Winners
* BEST PICTURE – The Artist
* BEST DIRECTOR – Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist)
* BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE – Jean Dujardin (The Artist)
* BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE – Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady)
* SUPPORTING ACTRESS – Octavia Spencer (The Help)
* SUPPORTING ACTOR – Christopher Plummer (Beginners)
* FILM EDITING – The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
* MAKE-UP – The Iron Lady
* FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM – A Separation (Iran)
* ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY – Midnight in Paris – Screenplay by Woody Allen
* ADAPTED SCREENPLAY – The Descendants – Screenplay by Alexander Payne and Nat Faxon & Jim Rash
* MUSIC (ORIGINAL SCORE) – Ludovic Bource (The Artist)
* MUSIC (ORIGINAL SONG) – Man or Muppet, from The Muppets – Bret McKenzie
* SHORT FILM (ANIMATED) – The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr Morris Lessmore

Red Carpet

Viola Davis in Vera Wang

Sean "Diddy" Combs

Maria Menounos in Maria Lucia Hohan (with Mario Lopez)

Gwyneth Paltrow in Tom Ford

Angelina Jolie in Atelier Versace with Brad Pitt

Octavia Spencer in Tadashi Shoji

Rooney Mara in Givenchy

Jennifer Lopez in Zuhair Murad

Penelope Cruz in Giorgio Armani

Cameron Diaz in Gucci Première

Bingbing Li in Georges Chakra Couture

Glenn Close in Zac Posen

Milla Jovovich in Elie Saab

Michelle Williams in Louis Vuitton

Natalie Portman in Vintage Christian Dior

George Clooney with Stacy Keibler in Marchesa

Rose Byrne in Vivienne Westwood

Emma Stone in Giambattista Valli

Giuliana Rancic in Tony Ward Couture

Jessica Chastain in Alexander McQueen

Tina Fey in Carolina Herrera

Sandra Bullock in Marchesa

Prince Albert of Monaco & Princess Charlene

Melissa McCarthy in Marina Rinaldi

Leslie Mann in Roberto Cavalli

Ellie Kemper in Armani Prive

Berenice Bejo in Elie Saab with Michel Hazanavicius

Shaun Robinson in Romona Keveza

Meryl Streep in Lanvin

Photo Credit: AP | Getty Images | Zimbio | UK Daily Mail


  1. deapo

    February 27, 2012 at 7:25 am

    i think it’s pretty simple and apparent the reason why africa especially nigeria is not involved in the oscars…we still produce absolute nonsense. we need a complete revolution in our so called “nollywood” because really if any nigerian actor auditioned for a serious role like that of Minny’s in the help, they would NEVER stand a chance in this world.

    • yeahisaidit!

      February 27, 2012 at 2:06 pm

      EXACTLY! The headline of this article is a complete no brainer! Africa is not “missing”, it has not earned a place at the Oscars!

    • Hosea

      February 27, 2012 at 6:50 pm

      Yes, Nollywood is the leading film industry in Africa. Maybe Bella N expected the Oscars to honor Lady Gaga, Jenifa, Tonto’s blue feem, Dirty Secrets, and Black Berry Babes with nominations. Those films were popular last year na! Hopefully, some of the other sci fi Ghanaian movies ,2016, terminator, and co, will get honored next year. *covers face*

      Until most of our actors start hiring English and linguistics lesson teachers then that will be a great step.

  2. zeenie

    February 27, 2012 at 8:11 am

    viola Davis looked exquisite , i dont get Sandra Bullock’s outfit thou…

  3. Me2me

    February 27, 2012 at 8:36 am

    Who actually expects Africa not to talk of Nigeria to be there. We r not there yet. But we will soon be

  4. Couture By Makioba

    February 27, 2012 at 8:37 am

    couture at its finest…..

  5. shadeow

    February 27, 2012 at 8:46 am

    Im soo glad George clooney didnt win that oscar….good for him! (yes im a hater lol!)

  6. Cho22

    February 27, 2012 at 8:57 am

    Gwynnie is HOTTTTT, love the Tom Ford look!!!

    • onyx

      February 27, 2012 at 2:03 pm

      As in, I was just about to post the same thing about her. That Gwyneth is a baaaad b**ch…

  7. Evann

    February 27, 2012 at 9:03 am

    Giulian Rancic & Merryi Streep,d best dressed!

  8. LO

    February 27, 2012 at 9:13 am

    Did BN seriously ask that question? hahhahahahahahahaha please get a grip! pray tell name one film, one African film worthy of recognition? None we produce crap, with mostly crappy actors and crappy simplistic storylines my four year old can write; girl smokes, that’s the bad girl, woman goes to church that’s the saint. Crap

  9. Yenih

    February 27, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Giuliana Rancic looks like she just walked out of the set of ‘The Artist’. Tres glam.

  10. Funto

    February 27, 2012 at 9:46 am

    @ lo …I don’t think your statements are on point! Yes Nollywood PRODUCERS and DIRECTORS need to do more… But the actors in my opinion are doing great!my friends and I have often times thought some of them if given the opportunity are actually better than their Hollywood colleagues!
    …and to your question about octavia’s role in the Help, I think Omotola can act that to pieces!if you wanna be truthful. They however need to push and work harder but haven’t said that. Do they have enough means?whose helping and supporting them?movies is a cost effective industry unlike music…a video of 4 mins and max 5 characters can’t be compared with. Movie for 2 hrs and at least 15 characters! They need funding … And our support( I.e no pirated copies)

    • onyx

      February 27, 2012 at 2:11 pm

      No honey, no. Say what you want in defence of our actors and I’m all for supporting our own but no way could Omotola have pulled off Minnie’s character in “The Help”. I mean, that scene alone where she stood and watched with sweet revenge while her former boss ate the pie wt her doodoo in it … Are we making judgements based on the body of work already seen from Omotola or based on the potential we hope she can achieve? If it’s the former, then no. She couldn’t have made the role what it was…

    • Hosea

      February 27, 2012 at 5:56 pm

      You aren’t sure of Omotola’s potential in that area yet! Which is why they have auditions to see who will play certain characters perfectly. I think the problem is the type of roles or story lines in Nollywood movies. The roles rarely challenge most of these actors and the story lines are usually weak.
      I haven’t seen Genevieve’s last movie..I can’t remember the name but I will like to see her play something other than a high class young woman or a boss chic. Preferably a role where she isn’t uptight. Genevieve appears quite reserved (always composed and shit) so I think such roles will not be as challenging to her.
      We need intelligent script writers to help our actors or better yet, have these cheap, greedy, and or bush Nollywood film makers work with authors to bring their stories to life.

    • Diva

      February 27, 2012 at 5:42 pm

      Omotola can act Minny in the HELP??? I am sorry but I can not agree with you on that.

  11. abimbola

    February 27, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Octavia spencer alwaz wears gown dat suit her her,jlo alwaz looking smashing&brangelina…lovely&fashionable couple

  12. ........just saying

    February 27, 2012 at 10:13 am

    Brad Pitt looks tired

  13. cyndy

    February 27, 2012 at 10:18 am

    penelope cruz looking divine in her dress.

  14. Alero

    February 27, 2012 at 10:27 am


  15. missglam

    February 27, 2012 at 10:42 am

    J.lo,my J.lo!!!! She never fails to blow my mind away!!! xxxxxx

  16. bubu

    February 27, 2012 at 11:17 am

    i love juliana rancic and emma stone!!!beautiful!….and pls instead of nigeria or africa trying 2 get to d oscars,y don’t we set our own standard in film and work towards those standards while rewarding pple 4 that,in our own land?….does any hollywood actor want to win AMAA awards?….

  17. Tiki

    February 27, 2012 at 11:33 am

    Wow, a lotta shine @ the Oscars this year! My breath got taken away by most of the gowns. Don’t get Sandra Bullock’s dress though, and Stacy Keibler’s frock.

  18. Layor

    February 27, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    @bubu thanks for pointing that out, we are Nigerians, lets do our best and thrive to be recognized in our own nationality…Am not saying the oscars is impossible.its just TOO far fetched.

  19. lydia

    February 27, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    The reason Africa is missing is because we are not there yet as with other industries like fashion as well.

    Take a look at the Red Carpet, pls show me a Nigerian designer that can produce that kind of exqusite product in their collection….too many designers full of their selves when they havent even got anywhere.
    Some just do a show somewhere in one of the island hotels and locations and think they are now Tom Ford…i beg without even stepping out of the peripherals of africa maybe ghana and they think they are up there, that is why Bella Africa is not there on both stakes Film and Fashion….lets go back to basics

    • lol

      February 27, 2012 at 1:10 pm

      I concur

    • Hosea

      February 27, 2012 at 6:31 pm

      There are certain Nigerian designers on the scene that can compete with these int’l designers. I believe we are better now because these foreign designers have run out of ideas that is why some of them are now “visiting” AFRICA or other “exotic” countries. Yes, it will take some time for them to get there but you need to understand that these designers are in a country/ market where people are shamelessly corrupt and evil that they see these designs and take it their favorite tailors to replicate. People don’t want to invest in quality. They don’t respect designers and their hard work that they even call them tailors. Some people even take their fabrics/ “materials” to designers to dictate what should sew after seeing the designs on Rihanna etc. Lol

      The designers on the scene right now (that have the most potential) Deola Sagoe is a boss (I am not sure if she’s the one who designs her own fabric sometimes), Jewel By Lisa is the sh*t, she does most of her designs from scratch (I don’t know if she does evening wear), Bridget is dope, Maki Oh is a child of God, she is my favorite, it is unfortunate that a lot of people don’t really understand her work because she doesn’t do pretty/ sweet dresses.

      I’ve seen some up and coming designers that are aren’t known yet. I know they will get there when the time is right.

      Do you expect them to show their collections in Moremi Hall/ Ajegunle so that people come to watch and take what they’ve seen to their Obiomas? You need to know your target market and focus on them. You don’t have to cater to everybody.

  20. Bolanle

    February 27, 2012 at 12:47 pm

    loving the majority of these outfits! Class at its finest 😀

  21. Ifeoma-adiagwuagwu

    February 27, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    🙂 Abeg wey charlize theron? 1975 no dey carry last o. We thank Baba Jesus.

  22. onyx

    February 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Last night, I was watching a movie called “White Hunters” wt Funke A, Mercy J and Ini E in it. The opening credits started rolling against a black screen and ran for almost 5mins before we even got any opening shots. I couldn’t believe the amount of screentime they wasted doing that. Nollywood needs to get a grip on basic film making techniques before going near any kind of international awards body.

  23. Funto

    February 27, 2012 at 2:48 pm

    @onyx – I am talking based on her already body of work and prospects with even better directors! What? Have you seen omotola in a movie called ” my story” ? Infact …you know we Nigerians are like this never truly supporting or proud of our own until someone picks them ( most times the white man), sell it back to us( probably the oscars e.t.c)… Then come and see claiming…oh up Nigeria we have just won an Oscar!!! Smh…whatever…

    • deapo

      March 10, 2012 at 7:17 am

      Look, the point is most of the actors in Nigeria regardless of who employs them in a movie ,be it white or black, need a lot of work . Omotola and Genevieve have both done movies abroad with white crew members and they still were not close to being oscar worthy. If it makes you feel any better, I don’t think even oscar winner Jennifer Hudson would have done a better job than Octavia as Minny either much less Omotola. At this moment if Omotola did a movie with a white director and won an oscar, i’ll never watch the oscars again ‘cos she definitely wouldn’t deserve it.

  24. T.S.

    February 27, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Does Africa deserve to be there in the first place? The title should be changed. The african movie industry still has a long way to go.

  25. Brownsugah

    February 27, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    All these is plenty gist and talk. All i know is that i like my octavia spencer so much she is my display picture on BB. She nailed the act in the help and please who is there saying Omotola could have done that job? Let’s not go there and it is not as a result of some form of bias but truth be told, not in the present movies i have seen. I mean, most of our Nigerian movies i can’t even get to watch past the first 15 mins of it. We will improve, We need funds but till then my favorites for the night are Octavia Spencer (seems she lost some weight), she pulled her dress out nicely, Jennifer Lopez, Gwyneth Paltrow and Tina Fey.

  26. Ndidi

    February 27, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    “Africa missing at the Oscars..” Seriously? Time for a reality check. How about African-Americans or “Blacks” as some would prefer to be called, missing at the Oscars? If you scanned the audience, you could probably count up to 10 (I’m being generous) black faces in the crowd. How many African-American nominees were there? Approx 75 years ago, an African-American woman won an oscar for role as a maid. 75 years later, an African-American woman is nominated, but does not win for playing a maid. I should hope as Africans, we don’t all hold our collective breaths waiting for Oscar to recognize us and develop our own worth-while, award winning talents.

  27. Personal tuvs

    February 27, 2012 at 3:58 pm

  28. Okechukwu Ofili

    February 27, 2012 at 4:20 pm

    I don’t who Leslie Mann is…but she is looking elegant. Best dressed for me.

  29. Sassy

    February 27, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    BN, do you really had to go there with that questioning title? Unless affirmative action is present in the Oscars and extended to include Africans, plus measuring standards extremely lowered, we sure ain’t there yet! Although am not to familiar with South African movie production . . . maybe . . .just maybe! But Nigeria – Heck NO!

  30. konnie

    February 27, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    How many non american countries and movies won oscars? Just asking. Dear commentators, do you even know how the voting and lobbying to get nominated works before you lobby to won? You all figure you just put a movie out there and you win? Even you Bellanaija.

    Not saying that there shouldn’t be a big improvement in production quality, acting etc? That also needs to take place. Africa was not missing. by te way, to get an Oscar, the guild members have to vote you in. Does anyone remember that Stephen Spielberg produced block busters but didn’t get nominated most times and only won after almost 20 years or more with Schindler List. Some for movies produced by people of colour.

    • obi-talk

      February 28, 2012 at 12:24 am

      you ve made the most sense here. the last time I checked Oscars is an american event so I don’t understand why loads of people are drinking panadol. How many Indian movies have won an Oscar? what is ur point exactly? yes the industry should improve but if ur waiting for a white man to celebrate you then you are on a very long thing. you have to celebrate urself first. And yes their are actors who are talented in our industry. we have good character actors, but not enough scripts to push them or arts for that matter. Besides there are loads of Nigerians who don’t watch American films so I don’t know why some people are coming on this blog to make noise.

  31. taiwo

    February 27, 2012 at 5:45 pm

    seriously i support all u who think that nigeria need to improve especially in our movie industry. truth to be told our movie industry sucks big time. it just rubbish and nonsense now. my mom cant even sit down and watch a nigerian english movie because she hates it. i love nigeria but we need to step it. the movies that are brought forth now a days are just complete stupid. the movies that doesnt even make sense have part 1, 2, 3, 4. if we want to go places nigerian’s need to put their best foot forward. also whoever said that there are not good designers in nigeria, i totally disgree maybe u need to look for them. but i also agree when u said that the one celebrities in nigeria dress especially the woman most of the time are horrible.

  32. Seesee

    February 27, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    Am sorry Hollywood movies don’t do it for me and are all cliché maybe because i live outside of Africa. Africa actually makes good story worthy films i enjoy watching, you need your own Hollywood, called something else not running to be recognised by others but recognising flourishing and helping selves in own industry. Africa was not present because it is in Africa, just like china was not present as it is in China. However am sure Chinese Americans, African Americans etc were present at Hollywood on and off screen and got their just do awards.

  33. Hosea

    February 27, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    Gwyneth Paltrow = Best dressed! Very unexpected.
    Rooney, I like that she didn’t reply on jewelry to look stunning
    Sandra looks good.
    George Clooney’s lady looks good. You could look like a gift in that dress but she pulled it off.
    J-Lo doesn’t look bad. She looks like a Hollywood movie star during Marilyn Munroe’s time.
    And the sweetheart, Viola, for looking beautiful and wearing her real hair.

  34. Seesee

    February 27, 2012 at 11:30 pm

    By the way hope you guys know most of this is wardrobe and gets returned. Chow.

  35. Elpee

    February 28, 2012 at 5:44 am

    I do not get this question/post at all. I think the answer is a no-brainer why African movies are yet to be recognized at the Oscars! I’d limit African to Ghana and Nigeria because short films like Shuga, Kenya, are showing us that there’s potential!

  36. 'Mi

    February 28, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Emma Stone is sooo hawt! I am loving her dress

  37. Yoknyam Dabale

    February 29, 2012 at 12:14 am

    Exactly, I agree with you, nailed it! We need to get rid of this desire of wanting to fit into a system that is not set in place for us. Creating our own and respecting it is part of the way forward!

  38. Audrey

    February 29, 2012 at 5:57 pm

    I don’t know if the south africans made any movies in the year under review.If they did,they are worth looking at.maybe even a nomination. those peeps are damn good and they are Africans 🙂 Have you seen Jerusalema? Tsotsi? Forget the Ghanaians and Nigerians please! it’l take forever

  39. Overturned

    March 1, 2012 at 11:05 am

    I think most people are confusing movies filmed with Africans with movies filmed by Africans. As far back as i can remember, Oscars are for Americans & their films produced anywhere in the world. Based on that, African actors, producers, directors etc might not feature in the Oscars except if there is a form of Collabo.

    However, i doubt if many of us know what these Nollywood folks go through. According to AFRICA’s “did you know?” segment, Nollywood films are made on shoe string budgets with an average production taking just 10 days and costing approximately $15,000. Now what on earth can you achieve with that besides what we get. We should rather applaud those who dare to be different & rise above the predictable (as few as they are) cos they are doing a fantastic job whether America recognizes it or not!

  40. Naveah

    March 2, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    Bella Naija, you just made me laugh with that title – “Once Again, Africa “Missing” at the Oscars!” AS IF we are ready and they keep neglecting to nominate our films…and by Africa, what do you mean exactly? Because South African films have been nominated in other years at the Academy and have won but IF you are talking Nollywood, abeg I pray you are not holding your collective breathes for that to happen. The only award that even the best Nollywood film can be nominated for is the Razzies because there is nothing produced in that industry that is remotely close to being nominated for an OSCAR, sorry! This is not about knocking down the industry, it is a fact! If we keep churning out soap opera movies like Guilty Pleasures, Bursting Out, half baked ones like Mirror Boy and total crap like Blackberry Babes, we can place a winning bet that Oscars here we NEVER come. It can never happen with their simplistic scripts and lack of quality production value. I am not even going to touch the actors/actresses because that wan mean sey una no go post my comments be dat so suffice it to say, Nollywood needs to stop focusing so heavily on the money aspect and create a balance where money and CREATIVITY can meet to work magic on screen. I am not saying money is NOT important but when money triumphs over creativity, it is not good either for the industry. The focus is on money and cutting corners which is why the AMAA awards will forever be good enough for Nollywood because after all it was created to celebrate the mediocrity that is constantly being churned out by industry favorites. Truth hurts, folks.

  41. Kgomotso

    March 6, 2012 at 8:51 am

    The reason why Africa is missing from the Oscars is the same reason why most European, Asian and non American countries are usually missing from the Oscars, because they are not produced in America. According to the Academy Awards Rules, “a film must open in the previous calendar year, from midnight at the start of January 1 to midnight at the end of December 31, in Los Angeles County, California, to qualify, except for the Best Foreign Language Film”. This makes it very difficult for any film maker that works outside of America to actually stand a chance at winning unless it is in the Best Foreign Language Film, even if their film is in English. Personally I believe that the best reflection of the world wide film industry is the Cannes International Film Festival, because it “offers an opportunity to determine a particular country’s image of its cinema”.

  42. deapo

    March 10, 2012 at 8:00 am

    I don’t know what the rules are at the oscars but i’m sure that at least nigerian movies can qualify for the best foreign film category. Think about the grammys and how kuti has been nominated for the third year in a row. I agree that there are politics at the oscars but the truth is we have a shot at the oscars at least in one category but we won’t be considered or voted in if we don’t improve. No matter how biased the academy is they are still professionals and can spot an amazing foreign movie when they see one. The least we can do is get nominated but until we improve on what we have we won’t. We are somewhat progressing but we’re still not there yet.
    Concerning Nigerian movie awards, I honestly don’t regard them as anything to be proud of. Don’t get me wrong, i’m all for advancing as a country and empowering ourselves but not when the quality of the work we do is crap. For now all we are doing with our awards is justifying the crap we put out, trying to make ourselves feel good about our mediocre movies. As for guys who think that we don’t need the oscars to show how good we are, all i’m gonna say is it shows just how good we are. It’s one thing to be good and known in your country and that’s cool but then it doesn’t hurt to be so damn good to a point where even people outside of your country know you and appreciate you i.e the oscars. Think of south Africa’s Nelson Mandela being recognized for leadership outside SA and Oprah being known outside America as well.

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