Zelensky has appeared at several film awards ceremonies as well as festivals after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but it seems the Oscars aren’t keen on getting him on. As reported by Variety, the Academy has refused Zelensky’s request to appear in the telecast this Sunday when the Oscars take place.
Zelensky, before becoming the president, was a highly-regarded comedy actor in Ukraine.
This is the second time Zelensky has been turned down by the Academy. Recent polls suggest that the support for assistance for Ukraine among Americans has decreased.
A documentary about Zelensky, titled Superpower, premiered at Berlin Film Festival last month. The film is directed by Aaron Kaufman and Sean Penn. Penn has been calling for the US government to provide more assistance for Ukraine and he also introduced Zelensky at the Golden Globes in January, where the impassioned leader of the war-torn country insisted Ukraine was going to win this war.
Oscars producer Will Packer declined Zelensky’s request to appear in the telecast of the awards ceremony last year. Variety report that Packer “expressed concerns that Hollywood was only showering Ukraine with attention because those affected by the conflict are white. By contrast, Hollywood has ignored wars around the globe that impact people of color”. Packer did not respond to Variety’s original request for comment.
Ukraine has been at war with Russia since February 2022 and there’s no end in sight for the conflict. Ukraine won last year’s Eurovision Song Contest, but was unable to commit to holding this year’s competition so the UK’s very own Liverpool has been selected to host. Mae Muller will represent the UK.