Last August, hairstylist Ted Gibson, who counts Anne Hathaway, Marion Cotillard and Angelina Jolie as clients, began a Facebook page called "We Need an Oscar for Hair" to bring a change in the way Oscars are given to the makeup and hairstyling branches of the Academy. (In past years, hairstylists fell under the Best Makeup category.)
"It's time for hairdressers to be recognized. We need to bring awareness to the Academy," he told The Hollywood Reporter at the time the campaign kicked off. Today, his movement had a major success: The Academy changed the category title from Best Makeup to the Makeup and Hairstyling Award. "I am so excited that the Academy is finally recognizing hairdressers in films. It's a great start," says Gibson. "People have gone to the Academy for decades to try to get hair on the ballot and they haven't responded at all. I feel proud to be part of the movement to make a change."
Does this coup mean Gibson, who has salons in Manhattan and Fort Lauderdale, is going to quell his cause? Not a chance. "I'm still not satisfied. Hair needs its own ballot. Meryl Streep acknowledged her hairstylist during her acceptance speech [for Best Actress in The Iron Lady] this year; she knows that if she showed up on set as herself, she wouldn't have had that Oscar. It's hair, makeup, costume — it all plays a role and it should all be separately recognized."Gibson credits social media outreach via Twitter and Facebook (Oscar for Hair Facebook page) for the increase of awareness of his cause. "I'm thrilled the Academy heard the message," he says, adding that he will continue with his campaign and collecting signatures on an official petition until hair has its own Oscar. "I think they'll have to do it eventually." Gibson's 'We Need an Oscar for Hair' Petition can be found here.