Record number of LGBTQ-inclusive films nominated for Best Picture at 91st Annual Academy Awards

Kumail Nanjiani and Tracee Ellis Ross announced the nominations for the 2019 Academy Awards on Tuesday morning and several LGBTQ-inclusive nominees were among those honored.

More than half of Best Picture nominees this year were LGBTQ-inclusive. They included The Favourite, Bohemian Rhapsody, A Star Is Born, Vice, and Green Book. This marks the most LGBTQ-inclusive films that have ever been nominated in Best Picture category in a single year. The two most recent Best Picture winners, Moonlight (in 2017) and The Shape of Water (in 2018), also highlighted LGBTQ stories. 

“Today’s list of Oscar nominees reflect a banner year for LGBTQ inclusion in film and a signal that the Academy and its members are rightfully prioritizing diverse storytelling at a time when audiences and critics alike are calling for more,” said GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “The diversity across the full list of nominations should be celebrated and will no doubt lead to more inclusive, culture-changing films. The majority of the LGBTQ-inclusive films highlight the stories of LGBTQ people throughout history showing that LGBTQ people and issues have always existed and that now is the time to tell these powerful and moving stories.”

Lady Gaga A Star is Born

Out bi musician and actress Lady Gaga picked up two nominations - one in Actress in a Leading Role for her work as Ally in A Star is Born and in Music (Original Song) for "Shallow." She is only the second nominee ever to be nominated both for song and in an acting category in the same year. All three lead actresses from The Favourite were nominated this year for playing LGBTQ characters. Olivia Colman was nominated for Best Actress for playing Queen Anne, along with Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz who each received nods for playing the objects of her affection. The Favourite received a total 10 nominations this year, matching Roma as the year’s most nominated film.

The Favourite

Both Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant were nominated for playing a lesbian and a gay man respectively in Can You Ever Forgive Me? The film tells the story of the late real-life lesbian author Lee Israel, played by McCarthy, who was arrested for creating a forgery ring of collectible signatures. Grant plays her accomplice, Jack Hock.

Can you ever forgive me

Rami Malek was nominated for Best Actor for playing Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. He won a Golden Globe for the role earlier this month.

Mahershala Ali was nominated for his role as gay piano virtuoso Dr. Don Shirley in Green Book. Ali won the Supporting Actor Oscar two years ago for his work in Moonlight.

mahershala ali in green book

If Beale Street Could Talk received a nomination in Best Adapted Screenplay, the film was adapted from the novel of the same name by legendary gay author and activist James Baldwin.

Out writer Jeff Whitty was also nominated in Best Adapted Screenplay for co-writing Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Documentary filmmakers Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman were nominated for their Netflix Documentary Short, End Game. They are previous Oscar winners for their work in The Times of Harvey Milk and Common Threads: Stories from the Quilt.

Composer/Lyricist team Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman were nominated for Original Song for writing “The Place Where Lost Things Go” from Mary Poppins Returns.

Shaiman was also nominated for his Original Score for Mary Poppins Returns.

The short film Marguerite, which tells the LGBTQ-inclusive story of an aging woman and her nurse who develop a friendship that inspires the woman to unearth unacknowledged longing and thus help her make peace with her past, was nominated in Live Action Short.


Click here to read the full list of nominees.

The 91st Annual Academy Awards take place on February 24th at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles and will air live on ABC.

Editor's Note: The film Vice was an accidental omission in an earlier listing of LGBTQ-inclusive Best Picture nominees.