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This Coda Star Is Only The Second-Ever Deaf Oscar Nominee

The 2021 Oscar nominations are here, and fans of Siân Heder's comedy-drama "CODA" will be happy to hear that the film is nominated in several pretty significant categories. 

CODA stands for "child of deaf adults," and the film follows the story of a young girl named Ruby Rossi (Emilia Jones) who is the non-deaf member of her household. Ruby dreams of becoming a famous singer, and in the film, she is forced to decide whether she will follow that dream or remain at home to support her family. "CODA" was lauded by critics and audiences alike upon its release, and it currently holds an astounding 96% critical rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

As if that weren't enough, the film is also nominated for three of the biggest categories at the Oscars: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actor for Troy Kotsur, per The Hollywood Reporter. Each of these nominations is an outstanding accomplishment on their own, but Kotsur's nomination is perhaps the most important of them all -– as he becomes just the second-ever deaf actor to be nominated for an Oscar, and the first deaf male nomination in Academy Awards history.

Troy Kotsur gives an incredible performance as Frank Rossi

In the film, Kotsur — who previously played a Tusken Raider on The Mandalorian, and helped develop a unique form of sign language for the Raiders to use – plays Ruby's father Frank Rossi, a brusque man who runs the family fishing business. Frank faces his own set of dilemmas throughout the film, as he is unable to promote his new business around town due to his disability, and often needs Ruby's help to get the word out. It's a role that is tragic and frustrating one moment, then hilarious and heartwarming the next, and — through the excellent performance of Kotsur — Frank steals the spotlight nearly every time he's on screen.

Kotsur's nomination for Best Supporting Actor makes him just the second deaf actor ever to receive a nomination, and it just so happens that his co-star Marlee Matlin (who plays Jackie Rossi in the film) was actually the first-ever deaf actor to be nominated for an Oscar. Martin was nominated in 1986 for her performance in "Children of a Lesser God" and actually ended up winning "Best Actress" that year. 

Fans of "CODA" will no doubt hope that Kotsur can repeat his co-star's success and pull away with a win. In any case, his nomination alone proves just how talented Kostur is, and we look forward to seeing his performances in the future.