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There's A New Academy President, And It's Not Laura Dern

Bailey in 2014 (Photo courtesy of the American Society of Cinematographers)
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The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences voted late Tuesday night to elect a new president, and despite the buzz surrounding the candidacy of actress Laura Dern, the winner was cinematographer John Bailey.

The Academy said in a statement Tuesday that Bailey, who has worked in the industry for almost a half-century and whose prolific body of work includes The Big Chill, Groundhog Day and As Good As It Gets, would succeed outgoing president Cheryl Boone Isaacs. Dern proposed a co-presidency but ultimately did not run for the position, Variety reports, allegedly because of her commitment to her acting career.

Bailey, 74, was elected to serve a one-year term as Academy president out of a possible four-year maximum. Although Bailey's body of work is undoubtedly impressive, many hoped to see Boone Isaacs, the Academy's first black and third female president, succeeded by a more diverse candidate, particularly in the wake of the #OscarsSoWhite controversy that has highlighted the Academy's lack of commitment to representation.

Hopefully, Bailey will continue Boone Isaacs' A2020 initiative to make the Academy twice as diverse by the end of the decade; in the meantime, Dernheads across the nation are clamoring for justice.