FiveThirtyEight’s by-the-numbers breakdown of the Academy voting process reveals why movies like ‘La La Land’ prevail.
The good data folk at FiveThirtyEight always have a contentious take on the outcome of high-profile political and social events, and the Oscars are no different. Earlier this week, the political aggregation site’s chief culture writer, Walt Hickey, confirmed a popular hunch: that the awards show is engineered in favor of movies like La La Land. To understand why, we’ll have to take a deep dive into the analytics that drive the Academy Awards machine.
Below, FiveThirtyEight’s video shows how the names get in those coveted envelopes in the first place. Using Moonlight‘s Mahershala Ali—up for Best Actor—as an example, Hickey delineates the Academy voting process, noting that Ali had to receive 17% of first-choice votes from the actors in the Academy in order to be nominated.
But when it comes to the win, things get a little more complicated.
Why the Oscars Are Rigged to Pick ‘La La Land’