Oklahoma native Wes Studi is among the recipients of the 2019 Governors Awards, presented by the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
According to a story in the Los Angeles Times, Studi, along with directors David Lynch and Lina Wertmüller, will receive the honorary Governors Awards at a ceremony Oct. 27. Actress Geena Davis will receive the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the same event.
These awards were once part of the regular Academy Awards but are now presented as part of a special ceremony. They are given to “recognize individuals who have devoted themselves to a lifetime of artistic accomplishment and brought outstanding contributions to our industry, and beyond,” said Academy President John Bailey in a statement.
Cherokee American Studi is known for his portrayals of strong Native American characters. Since breaking out in 1990’s “Dances With Wolves” and as the fierce Huron warrior Magua in 1992’s “Last of the Mohicans,” he has earned acclaim for his work in the movies “Geronimo: An American Legend,” “Heat,” “The New World,” “Avatar” and “Hostiles.”
In a Twitter post, Studi said, “I am deeply honored and humbled. I finally get to say, ‘I’d like to thank the Academy...’”
Davis, who won an Oscar for her supporting performance in “The Accidental Tourist” and has starred in such films as “Thelma & Louise,” “The Fly” and “A League of Their Own,” is the founder and chair of the nonprofit Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, which is dedicated to eliminating gender bias and stereotypes in entertainment and boosting roles for women. In 2015, she launched the Bentonville Film Festival to support women and diversity in the entertainment industry.
Since making his feature debut with 1977’s “Eraserhead,” Lynch has established himself as one of cinema’s most idiosyncratic and influential directors. His 1980 drama, “The Elephant Man,” earned eight Academy Award nominations, including directing and adapted screenplay for Lynch, along with best picture. He received additional directing nods for 1986’s “Blue Velvet” and 2001’s “Mulholland Drive,” yet he has never won a competitive Oscar.
In 1976, Wertmüller became the first woman to receive an Academy Award nomination for directing the picaresque film “Seven Beauties,” which also earned her an original screenplay nod. Known for tackling political and social issues, her other films include “The Basilisks” (1963), “The Seduction of Mimi” (1972), “Love and Anarchy” (1973) and “Swept Away” (1974).