Kenyan director Wanuri Kahiu invited to become member of Oscars Academy

Wanuri Kahiu

It’s been a tumultuous 2018 for Kenyan director Wanuri Kahiu, from making history at this year’s Cannes with her lesbian film Rafiki and the banning of the film in her country to signing a mega deal with The Gotham Group.

‘Rafiki’ film poster | Cannes Film Festival 2018

It’s been a bittersweet streak in her career, and she’s been more in the spotlight than ever before. Yesterday, the director announced on social media that she’s been invited to join the Oscars Academy’s class of 2018 and of course she accepted!

In its ongoing mission to diversify membership, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Monday that it has invited a record-breaking 928 new members, including Tiffany Haddish, Dave Chappelle, Kumail Nanjiani and Amy Schumer. This is the third year in a row that the institution has broken its own record – last year, it set a new high-water mark by inviting 774 new members.

Aside Kahiu, other directors invited to join the new class include Hong Sang-soo, Bela Tarr, Leon Ichaso, Justin Simien, Aisling Walsh, Craig Gillespie and Luca Guadagnino. The Academy, which hands out the Oscars each year, has promised to tailor its membership to include more women, racial minorities and international artists.

Congratulations to Kahiu!

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