Mary J Blige has officially made Oscar history as the first person ever to be nominated for an acting performance and an original song in a single year.

The Grammy award winning R&B superstar has earned an Oscar nom for her role as an impoverished farmer’s wife in the Dee Reese directed feature film Mudbound in the supporting actress category, and also earned an Oscar nomination in the best original song category, for “Mighty River,” which she wrote and sang for the film.  Both of these nominations make her the first person to earn a double Oscar nomination.

“It feels really good to be recognized, with all these nominations, because it shows that someone recognizes my hard work and the dedication and the time and how serious I’m taking this craft,” Blige said in an interview with The Times. “That means a lot because I never wanted to take this lightly [and] I didn’t want people to look at me like I didn’t take it seriously because you have the Queen Latifahs and the Tarajis [P. Henson] and the Angela Bassetts and the Viola Davises who worked really hard to pave the way for us. I really want them to be proud of me as well.”

Mudbound revolves around two families — one black and one white — struggling to survive during the post-War, Jim Crow era in rural Mississippi.

Blige was previously nominated for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture and Best Original Song at the Golden Globes. Her Mudbound role has also earned her nominations for Critics’ Choice Awards, Screen Actors Guild Award and a trophy for Breakout Actress at the Hollywood Film Awards.

Mudbound also made history when Rachel Morrison became the first woman ever nominated for Oscar’s Best Cinematography award.

The 90th annual Academy Awards will be hosted live by Jimmy Kimmel at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood on Sunday, March 4 starting at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT on ABC.  Be sure to tune in!



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The HBR Media Team is a collective group of black women filmmakers, writers, and studio/network executives who are passionate about bringing visibility to women of African descent working in film and television.

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