Kobe Bryant Denied Invite to Film Academy Despite Winning Oscar

Kobe Bryant (Credit: Dear Basketball)

Kobe Bryant is an Academy Award winner, but he won’t be invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which hands out the awards.

The Academy’s Short Films and Feature Animation branch voted to invite the Los Angeles Lakers legend to join the organization, but the Academy’s governors committee made the rare decision to overrule the invitation, Variety reported Wednesday evening.

People who win an Academy Award or receive a nomination, are usually invited to join the Academy.

Bryant wrote, executive produced and narrated director Glen Keane’s animated short film Dear Basketball.

In March, the project won an Oscar in the Best Animated Short Film category.

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But with one film credit, the governors committee decided Bryant is too much of a novice to warrant Academy membership.

The committee said he must show “some evidence of a larger career,” according to Cartoon Brew, which broke the story.

The Short Films and Feature Animation branch is not expected to appeal the committee’s ruling.

The final decision on who will be invited to join the Academy this year will be made on Saturday, when the full board of governors has its monthly meeting.

While Bryant’s fans celebrated his Oscar win on March 4, some members of the film community questioned his nomination in the wake of the Me Too and Time’s Up movements.

In 2003, Bryant was charged with sexual assault after a hotel employee in Colorado accused him of rape. The NBA star said the encounter was consensual.

The case was dropped after the accuser refused to testify in court.

The accuser filed a separate civil lawsuit, which was settled for an undisclosed amount of money.

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