Earlier this year—and, really, for no particular reason or pending lawsuits whatsoever—Casey Affleck announced that he’d be forgoing his expected duties at this year’s Oscars, skipping the job of handing out Best Actress to the winner of the class of 2018. (Traditionally, the best acting awards are presented by the winner of the opposite gender from the previous year, so the Manchester By The Sea star had technically earned himself the right.) Now, Variety reports that the Academy has found not just one, but two qualified women to serve in his place, with former Best Actress winners Jodie Foster and Jennifer Lawrence taking on the job.
Meanwhile, the Academy is giving a similar shake-up to the presentation of Best Actor (presumably to tamp down the “Oh, fuck, Casey Affleck” aspect of the change). Instead of Emma Stone—whose win for La La Land inadvertently set up a whole other load of Oscars-related drama last year—the award will be handed out by Helen Mirren and Jane Fonda, both Best Actress winners themselves. The idea, presumably, is to lean into the idea that Hollywood is experiencing “the year of the women,” which will also be acknowledged with planned nods to the Time’s Up movement during the ceremony.
Not that Stone’s being cut out entirely; unlike her male counterpart, she’s still listed as a scheduled presenter, although it’s not clear which category she’ll be gracing with her blessedly non-Casey-Affleck presence.