The 2020 Oscars have officially started -- but the kick-off to this year's awards show was not without its controversy.
Natalie Portman, who will be presenting at the ceremony alongside Timothee Chalamet, took her arrival at Sunday evening's ceremony as an opportunity to send a bold statement to the academy.
Embroidered on the cape of her gold and black Dior gown were the names of all the female directors who were not nominated for their work.
Portman paid homage to the many female directors whose work was not acknowledged in the category: Greta Gerwig from "Little Women," lma Har’el from "Honey Boy," Marielle Heller from “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood," Lorene Scafaria from “Hustlers," Melina Matsoukas from “Queen & Slim," Lulu Wang from The "Farewell," Céline Sciamma from “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” and Mati Diop from “Atlantics.”
"I wanted to recognize the women who were not recognized for their critical work this year in a subtle way," Portman told reporters on the red carpet.
— Amy Kaufman (@AmyKinLA) February 10, 2020
Last month, the academy received considerable backlash for its selection of nominees due to the lack of representation, especially in its best director category. In its 92-year history, only five women have been nominated for best director -- and only one nominee has received the award (Kathryn Bigelow won for “The Hurt Locker" in 2009).
Portman is one of many outspoken stars who have aired their frustrations about the lack of diversity in the industry and the organizations behind the accolades. While announcing this year's Oscars nominations, co-host Issa Rae also slyly commented on the long-rooted issue.
"Congratulations to those men," Rae firmly stated.
We can expect to hear more about the controversy later in the night, especially with the roster of stars slated to present at the awards show.