A documentary about periods has won an Oscar after reports that voters were unlikely to opt for it due to its subject being “too icky for men”.
Period. End of Sentence. took home the Best Documentary Short award days after an anonymous member of the Academy Award’s 519-person directors branch wrote an extensive piece for the Hollywood Reporter explaining his reason for voting in each category.
Period. End of Sentence., which is on Netflix now, follows women in Hapur, India. They learn to make sanitary pads and educate men and other women in their community about menstruation, where the subject has been deeply stigmatised for decades.
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“We learned that [menstruation is] very complex, and it’s a multi-layered issue — something that has been deeply rooted, a stigma deeply rooted, in Indian culture and society forever,” the documentary’s director Rayka Zehtabchi told Refinery.
She said many women interviewed for the documentary had never heard of pads before, or felt too embarrassed to buy them. Others couldn’t explain what a period was but believed it was bad. Ms Zehtabchi added: “When so few people talk about it, and there’s very little information around what this natural phenomenon really is, it starts to build fear around it.”
Winners at this year’s ceremony included Olivia Colman for The Favourite, Rami Malek for Bohemian Rhapsody, Regina King for If Beale Street Could Talk and Mahershala Ali whose film Green Book won Best Picture. Alfonso Cuarón took home Best Director for his Netflix drama Roma.
You can find a full list of winners here.
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