On Friday (June 28), the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed the 276 artists and executives they’ve invited to join the esteemed organization for 2013.
“These individuals are among the best filmmakers working in the industry today,” Academy President Hawk Koch said in a statement. With visionary directors Behn Zeitlin (“Beasts of the Southern Wild”) and Steve McQueen (“Shame) and legendary actress Emmanuelle Riva (“Amour”) invited, he’s on to something.
So what in all that is holy is Jennifer Lopez doing on the list?
Lest we offend any “Selena” fans, we’ll admit that Lopez turned in some fine work in the 1997 biopic, as well as 1998’s “Out of Sight.” But, come on. The woman who starred in “Monster-in-Law” and “Anaconda” is not one of the best filmmakers working today.
The Academy only began revealing its invitee list in 2004, and in the time since, it’s made a few other head-scratching decisions. (After all, Oscar nominee Michelle Williams wasn’t invited to join until 2009, an egregious three years after earning her nod for “Brokeback Mountain.”) Here are six other questionable invitees:
1. Beyonce – 2011
Sure, she starred in “Dreamgirls.” But she also starred in “Austin Powers in Goldmember” and “Obsessed.” We’re big fans of Queen Bey, but not for her contributions to film.
2. Gerard Butler – 2011
Butler’s two most-recent high-profile film releases before receiving his invitation? “The Bounty Hunter” and “The Ugly Truth.” Shut it down, Academy.
3. Milla Jovovich – 2013
That’s right, Ms. “Resident Evil” herself scored an invite this year. Does anything else need to be said?
4. Tyler Perry – 2009
Thankfully, he was invited as a director and not for his many turns as Madea, but we still question the artistic integrity of his films. There’s no doubt he’s been important to the business of film, and he’s certainly provided an underserved audience with a product they desired, but there’s just something about “Madea Goes to Jail” and the Academy that don’t mix.
5. Russell Brand – 2011
His turns playing Aldous Snow in “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” and “Get Him to the Greek” made him a star. His remake of “Arthur” nearly undid that. Not that the Academy should only laud stuffy, period dramas, but Brand’s comedies aren’t exactly up to par with his peers.
6. John Corbett – 2011
Corbett rightly deserves celebration for his long TV career. His work in “Northern Exposure” and “Sex and the City” is aces. His film career, however? There’s just one thing to say: “Sex and the City 2”
Who do you think is the oddest invitee to the Academy? Let us know in the comments.