Barack & Michelle Obama Didn't Get Oscar Though Their Netflix Documentary 'American Factory' Received the Award
"American Factory," a film backed by Barack and Michelle Obama's production company "Higher Ground," recently took home the Oscars for the best documentary feature.
THE REAL REASON WHY
The reason behind it is that the Obamas and their production company "Higher Ground" signed onto the documentary only after it was made. By then, it had debuted in the 2019 Sundance Film Festival.
Since the award is designed to reward the ones who are mostly involved in the actual production of a film, the Obamas didn't win the award.
The Oscar's qualification of a primary producer includes being involved in finding talent, financing, making sure that the movie gets made, and so on.
This doesn't mean that the couple cannot win an Oscar in the future for films produced by their company but for that to happen, they would have to be more involved in the making of the films.
A GLORIOUS WIN
Because the Obamas didn't attend the Oscars, they weren't seen on stage with the movie's producers during their acceptance of the prestigious award."American Factory" is a film that revolves around the culture clash at an Ohio manufacturing plant at Dayton, Ohio. It documents the post-industrial landscape of the city where a Chinese billionaire opens a factory in an abandoned General Motors plant.
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Watching #AmericanFactory, I thought a lot about my dad. That blustery Midwestern weather, the shift workers in their uniforms—it’s what he lived every day. His work was his pride and his sense of purpose; it’s what allowed him to pay the bills and send his two kids to college. I saw a lot of that dignity in this film; a spirit that connects us no matter if we’re in Chicago or Ohio, no matter what we look like or what our background is. This documentary portrays that pride, and adds in all sorts of depth and layers and complications, which makes it exactly the kind of storytelling Barack and I hope to accomplish with Higher Ground Productions. We want to help foster an ability to see ourselves in each other’s stories. That’s something we talked about with Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar, who directed American Factory, over coffee. See for yourself at the link in the bio and then check out their excellent documentary, which is now streaming on @Netflix.
Besides winning an Oscar, the movie is also the winner of 18 different awards and 42 nominations. Barack congratulated the filmmakers Julia Reichert, Steven Bognar, and Jeff Reichert for their win through a tweet.
"Glad to see two talented and downright good people take home the Oscar for Higher Ground’s first release."
Congrats to Julia and Steven, the filmmakers behind American Factory, for telling such a complex, moving story about the very human consequences of wrenching economic change. Glad to see two talented and downright good people take home the Oscar for Higher Ground’s first release. https://t.co/W4AZ68iWoY— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) February 10, 2020
Meanwhile, Michelle also sent out a tweet with her own set of congratulatory words. Back in 2018, Obamas' production company signed an exclusive deal with Netflix to produce fiction and non-fiction programming including TV series, films, and documentaries.
The slate also includes shows for preschoolers like "Listen to Your Vegetables & Eat Your Parents" by Erika Thormahlen and Jeremy Konner. According to Michelle, she loves the slate because it consists of the stories that are relevant in people's daily lives.