Beyonce, Russell Brand, Rooney Mara, Jesse Eisenberg: Meet the 2011 Academy Class

1:30 PM PST 06/25/2011 by THR staff
Gabriel Bouys/AP Photos; John Sciulli/Getty Images

Who says the Oscars are too old? But not all members of the esteemed Motion Picture Academy are on board with some of the 178 newbies invited to join the group.

The Academy of motion Picture Arts and Sciences has invited 178 new members into the fold, and Academy president Tom Sherak says they represent "the best filmakers working in the industry today." But the Academy can be a big, dysfunctional family, and not all its members approved.

One questioned the inclusion of CBS president and CEO Leslie Moonves since his only connection to film is the relatively new CBS Films unit. "Too many people on that board work in television, and they were afraid it would get back to him if they said no," the member gripes.

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A number of the actors also raised eyebrows. "John Corbett is the most questionable one," says a member. "Doesn't he do voice-overs for Applebee's?" Another a similar complaint but a different list. "Tea Leoni, David Duchovny -- these are people not working in film. And Beyonce? She's a fine entertainer, but she moonlights as an actress."

Some felt that in seeking out younger members, the Academy was in too big a hurry, citing Rooney Mara. "I could see her getting in maybe after The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," says one, "but she was in The Social Network for something like eight minutes." Even so, this member says the Academy could use some fresh faces: "If they are under the age of 70 -- welcome."   

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THE YOUNGSTERS

Who says the Academy is too old? Some of the newest members of the acting branch will have to show IDs to get a drink at the Oscars

  • Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network
  • Mila Kunis, Black Swan
  • Jennifer Lawrence, Winter's Bone
  • Rooney Mara, The Social Network
  • Ellen Page, Juno
  • Mia Wasikowska, Alice in Wonderland

THE 'TOO SCARY TO SAY NO TO' PEOPLE

Executive status has its perks -- and one is a summons to join the club

  • Leslie Moonves, president and CEO, CBS
  • Christopher Dodd, chairman and CEO, MPAA
  • Dawn Hudson, CEO, AMPAS
  • Donna Langley, co-chairman, Universal Pictures
  • Rich Ross, chairman, Disney Studios
  • Ric Robertson, COO, AMPAS
  • Thomas Tull, CEO, Legendary Pictures

THE INDIE CROWD

A number of filmmakers with indie cred got the nod -- it's like a Sundance reunion

  • Peter Dinklage, The Station Agent
  • John Hawkes, Winter's Bone
  • Gregg Araki, The Living End
  • Lisa Cholodenko, The Kids Are All Right
  • Debra Granik, Winter's Bone
  • John Cameron Mitchell, Shortbus
  • Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, The Kids Are All Right

THE CURVEBALLS

So we're not talking Meryl Streep and Robert De Niro. Even the Academy needs to have fun.

  • Russell Brand, Arthur
  • Beyonce Knowles, Dreamgirls

THE TV STARS

They cross the line between TV and film but are still mainly associated with the small screen

  • John Corbett, My Big Fat Greek Wedding
  • David Duchovny, The X-Files
  • Dominic Monaghan, The Lord of the Rings

THE MATINEE IDOLS

The Academy isn't immune to the star wattage they bring to the party

  • Gerard Butler, 300
  • Bradley Cooper The Hangover
  • Jennifer Garner, Juno

THE OSCAR WINNERS

An Oscar doesn't automatically mean membership, but these were all deemed worthy

  • Susanne Bier, In a Better World
  • Tom Hooper, The King's Speech
  • Charles Ferguson, Inside Job
  • Iain Canning, The King's Speech
  • Paul J. Franklin, Inception
  • Lora Hirschberg, Inception
  • Ed Novick, Inception
  • Andrew Ruhemann, The Lost Thing
  • Aaron Sorkin, The Social Network
  • Emile Sherman, The King's Speech
  • David Seidler, The King's Speech
  • Shaun Tan, The Lost Thing
  • Gareth Unwin, The King's Speech
  • Angus Wall, The Social Network

WHAT TOOK THEM SO LONG?

Patience sometimes pays off, as these showbiz veterans can testify

  • Robbie Coltrane, Mona Lisa
  • Wes Studi, Geronimo: An American Legend
  • Terence Blanchard, Malcolm X
  • David Rabe, Casualties of War

THE HITMAKERS

Their movies might not always win Oscars, but box-office success is hard to ignore

  • Kevin Feige, Iron Man
  • Gary Goetzman, Mamma Mia!
  • Todd Lieberman, The Proposal
  • Robert Lorenz, Gran Torino
  • Aline Brosh McKenna, The Devil Wears Prada
  • Emma Thomas, The Dark Knight

POSTHUMOUS

  • Tim Hetherington
    In an unprecedented gesture, the Academy included the late documentary filmmaker, who was nominated at this year's Academy Awards for his film Restrepo and was killed April 20 while covering the uprising in Libya. It also invited his Restrepo co-director Sebastian Junger.
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