Ukraine’s Zelenskyy denied Oscar Awards appearance for second year in a row: report

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For the second year in a row the Oscars have declined the opportunity to feature Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy during the award show’s telecast.

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), which runs the Academy Awards – more commonly known as the Oscars – shut down a plea from power agent Mike Simpson to let Zelenskyy appear in a virtual spot during the ceremony, repeating its stance from last year when Oscars producer Will Packer reportedly rejected a similar request, according to Variety. 

Zelenksyy’s team had enlisted Simpson, who represents Hollywood heavyweights including Quentin Tarantino and Bong Joon Ho of “Parasite” fame, to help build inroads with the Golden Globes and the Oscars after last year’s rejection. 

The effort resulted in a few minutes during the Globes for Zelenskyy to make his plea for continued support, but the Oscars will not follow suit. 

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Packer allegedly rejected a Zelenskyy appearance in 2022 because he worried that Hollywood only gave Ukraine so much attention because its people were White, while ignoring wars and conflicts that impact people of color. 

Packer’s potential reasoning for nixing Zelenskyy this year remains unclear, but support for the Ukraine defense against Russia’s invasion has waned in recent months. 

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A Pew poll from January of this year found that around one-quarter of the U.S. population now believes that the country does “too much” to support Ukraine – a number that grew from just 7% when the war started. Almost half of respondents who identify as Republican believe the country has done “too much.” 

The amount of people who think the country has done “not enough” has dropped by nearly half, with just around 20% supporting that position. 

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According to the Ukrainian government, the U.S. leads all countries in $196 billion in total military, financial and humanitarian aid to Ukraine from Jan. 24, 2022 through Nov. 20, 2022. Germany has sent the second-most funds, with $172 billion sent in that span. 

The Oscars hit an all-time low in viewership in 2021 with a 13.75 million viewer drop-off from previous years but climbed significantly in 2022 following Will Smith’s infamous slap and deaf actor Troy Kotsur collecting his award, according to Screendaily.

The AMPAS did not respond to a Fox News Digital request for comment by time of publication. 

Fox News Digital’s Lawrence Richard contributed to this report. 

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