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Coda’s Troy Kotsur becomes first deaf man to win an acting Oscar

Coda's Troy Kotsur has won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar at the 94th Academy Awards beating off Ciarán Hinds, JK Simmons, and Jesse Plemons

Troy Kotsur Coda best supporting actor Oscar

Troy Kotsur has won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar at the 94th Academy Awards for his role in Coda. Kotsur is the first deaf man to ever win an acting Oscar. The Apple TV Plus star paid tribute to the deaf community during his heartwarming acceptance speech.

“This is dedicated to the deaf community, the CODA community, and the disabled community. This is our moment,” he signed. Kotsur played Frank Rossi, the hilarious and encouraging father of Emilia Jones Ruby.  Coda (Child of Deaf Adults) tells the story of Ruby as she struggles to balance her family’s struggling fishing business and her own dream of attending the Berklee College of Music. Coda went on to win the Best Picture award later in the ceremony.

Despite the Best Supporting Actor being one of the most competitive categories at this year’s awards Troy Kotsur managed to beat off competition that included Belfast’s Ciarán Hinds, Being The Ricardo’s J.K. Simmons, Power of the Dog’s Jesse Plemons, and Kodi Smit-McPhee both of whom were nominated for Jane Campion’s western.

This year’s Oscars ceremony hasn’t been without its controversies. In an attempt to shorten the award’s runtime, The Academy pre-recorded the presentation and acceptance of eight awards related to ”below the line’ achievements.

This has unsurprisingly upset the filmmakers related to those achievements who do not feel they are being treated with the respect due to them. Several filmmakers, including James Cameron, Jane Campion, and John Williams, have drafted a letter criticising the decision to relegate these awards to “the status of second-class citizens”.

As a result, several protests have been organised with some Academy members promising to hold their awards upside down, while Jessica Chastain has said she will not attend the red carpet in support of her make-up team, who are nominated for The Eyes of Tammy Faye.

There have also been more than a few eyebrows raised by the Academy’s introduction of a fan favourite category -n award that the public vote on. While some have praised the move as making the ceremony more relevant to general audiences, others have raised concerns it could allow bigger studios to ‘buy’ awards.

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