Oscar Snub: Greta Gerwig Beats Out Every 2020 Best Director Nominee In This Way

Filmmaker and actress Greta Gerwig is on her way to becoming a household name. From her publicized relationship with Marriage Story‘s Noah Baumbach to her numerous Academy Award nods, she’s swept Hollywood. So many were surprised when she wasn’t nominated for Best Director for her 2019 film Little Women. But she does show up the other contenders in one prominent way.

Greta Gerwig directed ‘Little Women’

Greta Gerwig at the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards on January 05, 2020
Greta Gerwig at the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards on January 05, 2020 | Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Gerwig was at the helm of one of the best films of 2019. She wrote and directed Little Women, which is based on Louisa May Alcott’s 19th Century novel. It has been adapted numerous times, though perhaps most notable is the 1994 film starring Winona Ryder and Kirsten Dunst, among several other famous names.

Both films took liberties with the original novel, though Gerwig’s choices were interesting in that they leaned into a more modern sensibility. The story is framed around Jo writing the novel Little Women about her life and, rather than a linear plot, jumps back and forth in time, drawing parallels.

She was not nominated for Best Director

Like the ’90s adaptation before it, this Little Women was praised by critics and audiences alike. It also earned a few nominations at the Oscars, as well as other awards shows. But as the movie itself points out, the genius of a woman is often ignored, especially when men are the judges.

What we mean to say is that Gerwig herself was not nominated for Best Director. Though it’s true that only five nominees are chosen, while there are ten contenders for Best Picture, many were still unhappy to see Gerwig excluded. As Issa Rae said while announcing the nominees: “Congratulations to those men.”

Gerwig surpasses the male nominees in this way

The lack of female nominees in this category isn’t new. In fact, in total, only five women have ever been nominated for Best Director. And Gerwig happens to be one of them — she was nominated in 2017 for her debut, Lady Bird, though she lost out to Guillermo del Toro for The Shape of Water.

There are plenty of methods for measurement used to judge a film (and the director). One such way? Rotten Tomatoes scores. The site did just that when it shared the highest and lowest-rated films of each director up the prize this year. And there are few things to note here.

Looking at the Rotten Tomatoes tweet compared with another image shared on Twitter, Gerwig’s lowest-rated film, Little Women, is still rated higher than any of the men nominated this year. Additionally, of all the nominated films, only Parasite is the director’s highest-rated film. Even though she’s only made two movies, it’s hard to figure out why Gerwig isn’t on this list.

What Oscars is ‘Little Women’ nominated for?

Moving on, let’s celebrate what awards Little Women is nominated for. The film is up for a total of six Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Gerwig herself is nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Stars Saoirse Ronan (Jo March) and Florence Pugh are nominated in the Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress categories, respectively. And Little Women is also nominated for Best Original Score and Best Costume Design. Needless to say, Gerwig probably isn’t sweating the loss of the Best Director nomination.