Wes Studi is set to make Oscar history.
Studi, who is of Cherokee descent, will become the first Native American actor to receive an Oscar. The golden statuette will be awarded October 27 at the 11th annual Governors Awards.
The honorary Oscar is one of four that will be presented. Directors David Lynch and Lina Wertmüller also will be honored, and actress Geena Davis will receive the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.
Studi is the first Native American to receive the honorary award. Buffy Sainte-Marie, the indigenous Canadian singer-songwriter, shared a best original song Oscar for “Up Where We Belong” from “An Officer and a Gentleman” (1982).
Studi starred in the 1990 film “Dances With Wolves” and went on to appear in more than 40 films, including “The Last of the Mohicans,” “Geronimo: An American Legend,” and more recently “Hostiles” and “A Dog’s Way Home.”
In a statement, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that Studi was chosen for “portraying strong Native American characters with poignancy and authenticity.”
The honor reflects changes in the film industry since 1973 when Marlon Brando declined to accept his best actor award for “The Godfather” and instead sent Sacheen Littlefeather to take the stage at the ceremony and slam Hollywood’s treatment of Native Americans.