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Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson’s Oscar Magnificence Nod Made Historical past

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Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (2020): (L to R) Viola Davis as Ma Rainey, Taylour Paige as Dussie Mae, and Dusan Brown as Sylvester.Cr. David Lee / Netflix

Contemporary off the heels of Grammys weekend, the 2021 Academy Award nominations had been formally introduced on March 15, and though this yr’s ceremony will not happen for an additional month, the nominees are already making historical past. Chadwick Boseman posthumously obtained his first-ever Oscar nomination for his position in Ma Rainey’s Black Backside, whereas Viola Davis’s greatest actress nod for her work on the identical movie formally made her essentially the most nominated Black actress in Oscar historical past. Nevertheless it’s not simply the actors within the movie which are breaking limitations: the film’s lead hairstylists, Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson, simply turned the primary Black girls to obtain nominations within the make-up and hairstyling class.

Neal served because the movie’s lead hair division head, whereas Wilson labored on set as Davis’s private hairstylist. Their nomination is one other necessary reminder of the superb work that may occur when Black magnificence professionals are employed to work with Black expertise on movie and TV initiatives.

“This nomination is validation that hair styling is an artwork type, a craft and a talent,” Wilson wrote on Instagram. “It additionally exhibits each Black girl or man doing hair that we will obtain, and extra importantly that our expertise and talent is equal and distinctive.”

For Davis’s dramatic transformation into the blues singer, Neal and Wilson created a customized wig made out of a bundle of horse hair that was beforehand coated in manure and infested with inactive lice.


“The mane of hair confirmed up in its pure state, tied from prime to backside and minimize proper off the horse, coated with [inactive] lice and manure,” Neal instructed POPSUGAR in a earlier interview. “The hairs had been so coarse and thick that I may solely tie one hair via the lace at a time, or I might rip it, so your complete wig is single strand.”

To set it right into a sure model, additionally they needed to boil the wig a number of occasions. It is protected to say that there was a complete lot of labor that went into Davis’s make-under — however this historic Oscar nod positively proves that it was all value it.

Picture Supply: Netflix / David Lee

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