People aren’t happy that Kobe Bryant won an Oscar

The NBA star won Best Animated Short for 'Dear Basketball' at tonight's ceremony

Kobe Bryant’s Oscar victory has been criticised tonight (March 1).

The NBA star picked up an award at the Hollywood bash in the category of Best Animated Short. He served as executive producer on the triumphant Dear Basketball.

The former LA Lakers player’s win was quickly criticised by viewers. Bryant was accused of raping a 19-year-old in 2003. He denied the encounter at first, but later said it was consensual, and the case was dropped in 2004 when the woman involved was unwilling to testify in court.

A civil suit was later filed against Bryant and was settled out of court for an undisclosed amount.

Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant

“People say that rape allegations will ruin a man’s life but here is Kobe with an Oscar in front of my own eyes,” podcaster Aminatou Sow wrote on Twitter.

“Don’t tweet about supporting women if you support Kobe Bryant,” another Twitter user wrote.

A petition was started ahead of the ceremony calling on the Academy to revoke Bryant’s nomination. The synopsis for the petition noted that neither Woody Allen or James Franco, who have been accused of sexual misconduct, were nominated for awards (Allen has denied the claims against him, while Franco has described the allegations levelled at him as “not accurate”). 

At the time of writing, the petition has 16,282 signatures. Bryant nor the Academy have responded to the criticisms at present.