Bao’s director speaks to ‘nerdy girls’ everywhere in Oscars acceptance speech


In a historic win, Pixar’s Bao took home the Oscar for Best Animated Short, and director Domee Shi gave an inspiring and beautiful speech to geeky women.

While there were many ups and downs to last night’s 91st Academy Awards, Domee Shi and Becky Neiman-Cobb’s Bao won an Oscar for Best Animated Short Film. It was the first Pixar short to be directed by a woman as well as the first nomination for Domee Shi and Becky Neiman-Cobb.

The film tells that tale of a mother dealing with empty nest syndrome when one of her bao, a steamed bun, comes to life. It shows their life starting with the bao as a baby and becoming an adult. It’s about the relationship between mothers and their children as well as differences in cultural values with children. Most importantly, the film explores the importance of food in family and culture. This sweet and thoughtful film was screened as the short before Incredibles 2.

When Shi accepted her Oscar, she gave a beautiful message to nerdy girls: “To all of the nerdy girls out there who hide behind their sketchbooks, don’t be afraid to tell your story to the world. You are probably going to freak people out, but you’ll probably connect with them too.”

Neiman-Cobb, who produced, added: “I got to help make a short about a mother just as I was becoming one.”

In earlier interviews, Shi explained how she wanted to celebrate her food culture as well as her mother:

"Dumplings hold a special place in my heart…I would make them with my mom growing up, and I wanted to pay tribute to the dumpling in this short. […] I’ve always loved fairy tales like The Little Gingerbread Man or that old folk song, There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly. I loved how they’re able to balance light and dark themes so well, and I wanted to do a modern-day Chinese version."

We were so excited to see a win for Shi and Neiman-Cobb on a movie about motherhood. It’s a benefit for all women who want to work in animation as well as women who want to see their stories being represented in film and other mediums. Moreover, it’s a celebration of Chinese food and culture!

Twitter was full of delighted Bao fans:

Related Story. 15 of the most memorable Pixar side characters, ranked. light

This film clearly resonated with audiences and brings a whole new level of depth and love to the animated medium. Congratulations again to Domee Shi and Becky Neiman-Cobb!