Oscar 2017: Record Number of African American Nominees

#OscarsSoWhite no more–at least this year.

In sharp contrast to 2016, this year proved to be a stronger year for diversity, both in front of and behind the camera.

While no actors of color were nominated the last two years, this year saw every acting category recognizing a person of color.

Seven Minority Actors

This year ties a record with 2007, when 7 minority actors were recognized, including a record-setting six black actors.

In the Best Actor category, Denzel Washington landed his seventh nomination for “Fences,” making a record as the most nominated black actor.

His co-star Viola Davis was nominated in supporting actress, which also saw Davis’ “The Help” co-star Octavia Spencer nominated for “Hidden Figures” and Naomie Harris for “Moonlight.”

With three nods, Viola Davis is now the most nominated black actress.

In the Best Actress category, Ruth Negga was nominated for her work in “Loving.”

In supporting actor, Mahershala Ali landed a nomination for “Moonlight.”

Also recognized in supporting actor was Dev Patel, a British actor of Indian descent, for “Lion.”

However, these films were already in production last year, and it could take several years to change course in response to last year’s controversy.

Second Black Female Producer: Kimberly Stewart

But it didn’t just stop with the acting; many prominent categories also recognized people of color.

Manchester by the Sea, which is nominated for best picture, see Kimberly Steward as the only the second black female to be nominated for producing. The first was Oprah Winfrey for Selma, in 2014.

Directors: Barry Jenkins Fourth Black Nominee

As writer-director of “Moonlight,” Barry Jenkins found himself the fourth black best director nominee, after John Singleton, Lee Daniels, and Steve McQueen.

His writing nomination, shared with playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney, made them the seventh and eighth black men nominated for screenplay.

Jenkins is only the second black writer-director to be nominated for both films, after Singleton.

In the writing category, the late August Wilson, the prominent black playwright was nominated for the adaptation of his play, “Fences.”

Documentary Feature

The documentary feature category was made up almost entirely of people of color:

Ava DuVernay (“13th”), Raoul Peck (“I Am Not Your Negro”), Ezra Edelman (“O.J.: Made in America”), and Roger Ross Williams (“Life, Animated”).

Previously, there have only been three black directors nominated in the category.

DuVernay marks the first black woman.

Other notable noms include: Bradford Young for his cinematography of “Arrival,” only the second black nominee ever after Remi Adefarasin for “Elizabeth.”

And with her editing nomination for “Moonlight,” Joi McMillon became the first black female nominee in the category, and second black nominee after Hugh A. Robertson for “Midnight Cowboy.” In the same category is “La La Land” editor Tom Cross, who is half-Asian; two years ago, Cross won in the category for “Whiplash.”  And Lin-Manuel Miranda, the American-born artist who is primarily of Puerto Rican descent, could find himself EGOT-ing this year with his best song nomination for “Moana.”

While the nominations brought good news for people of color, there are still strides to be made when it comes to female nominees. Once again, women were shut out of the best director category and of the 10 nominated screenplays, “Hidden Figures” co-writer Allison Schroeder was the only woman nominated. And after all these years, a woman has yet to be nominated in the cinematography category.

Producers fared better; in addition to Steward, female producers who saw their films up for best picture include Carla Hacken and Julie Yorn (“Hell or High Water”), Adele Romanski and Dede Gardner (“Moonlight”), Donna Gigliotti and Jenno Topping (“Hidden Figures”), and Angie Fielder (“Lion”).