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Arts and Entertainment

Laura Dern Could Be The Next Academy President, If We're Very Lucky

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Dern at a 2017 screening of Wilson. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
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The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has been up against it of late, with the academy's board of governors still scrambling to rehabilitate the award show's image after the February envelope mix-up heard 'round the world. This Tuesday, the board has an image-defining decision to make—electing a brand-new Academy president.

On Tuesday at 6 p.m., the 54 actors, writers, directors and other industry players who make up the academy's board of governors will vote on a new president to succeed Cheryl Boone Isaacs, who has helmed the Academy since 2013. As the first black, and third female, Academy president, Boone Isaacs pushed for increased diversity in the wake of 2015's #OscarsSoWhite campaign, launching an initiative to make the Academy twice as diverse by the end of the decade.

Potential successors to Isaacs' throne include casting director David Rubin and documentary filmmaker Rory Kennedy, but one name in particular stands out; Laura Dern, who would be the first actress to run the Academy since Bette Davis in 1941. Dern has been a reliable presence in Hollywood for years, from cult favorites like David Lynch's Blue Velvet to big-budget crowd-pleasers like Jurassic Park. Her roles on the Twin Peaks reboot and on the HBO hit Big Little Lies have made Dern even more of a household name of late, elevating her to the elusive meme status.

An Academy presidency for Dern could be a step forward for the organization's commitment to diversity—Dern's newly opened production studio, Jaywalker Pictures, is dedicated to creating roles for older women, Jezebel reports, and if elected, Dern would be only the fourth female president in the Academy's history. Here's hoping the Academy board, which includes luminaries from Tom Hanks to Whoopi Goldberg, doesn't sleep on Renata Klein.