Recent nominations from leading industry guilds strongly suggest that there are only three films with realistic footage at best.
NEW YORK. Admittedly, there were some notable distractions at last year’s ceremony, so you may have missed it: the old Oscar rules are gone.
The film, streamed on Apple TV+, won Hollywood’s top non-box office award. But this year, there’s a twist! – there is not a single streaming project in the hunt for the main prizes of the Oscars. Popcorn will be on the menu when the nominations are announced on Tuesday. Top Gun: Maverick, Avatar: The Way of the Water, and Elvis all look confident in Best Picture nominations.
But after a rocking film year, when every statement about the future of theatrical cinema at different times was plausible – the audience is back! No they don’t! – Hollywood’s top movie of 2022 may not end up being either a streaming hit or a box office hit.
Recent nominations from leading industry guilds strongly suggest that there are only three films with realistic footage at best. The sci-fi indie All and Everywhere at Once, the Irish black comedy The Banshee of Inisherina, and Steven Spielberg’s fictionalized memoir Fabelmana were the only films nominated for top prizes from the Screen Actors Guild and the Producers Guild. and the Directors Guild. As much as some would like Top Gun: Maverick to buzz the Oscar Tower, performing with the Actors Guild was almost always the death knell for better picture chances.
But the 95th Academy Awards on March 12 is still a long way off. Here’s a rundown of what we can expect when the nominees are announced Tuesday morning.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITES?
The Banshees of Inisherin by Martin McDonagh and Everything, Everywhere, All at Once by Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert seem to have received the strongest support. Along with nods for director, screenplay and best picture, both films could receive up to four nominations for acting on Tuesday. “Everything, Everywhere, All At Once” star Michelle Yeoh leads the way in the Best Actress category, while her co-star Ke Hui Quan, a former child star, seems to be running away with Best Supporting Actor. Banshee star Colin Farrell is probably the toughest competitor for Brendan Fraser (Keith) and Austin Butler (Elvis) for Best Actor, while Brendan Gleeson, Kerry Condon and Barry Keoghan can get support.
WHAT IS “FABELMANS”?
It was the answer: “Danger!” a contestant could come up with in a recent episode, a moment of punishment in Spielberg’s widely acclaimed Golden Globe-winning coming-of-age drama. The Fabelmans has been leading the charge since its award-winning Toronto International Film Festival premiere, but there are some cracks in its campaign beyond unanswered game show prompts. Michelle Williams unexpectedly missed out on a SAG nomination, but expect the academy (which has previously nominated Williams four times) to fix that. More complicated is that, unlike All, Everywhere, All At Once or The Banshee of Inisherin, Fabelmans ($14.4 million domestically) was less successful at the box office. Ironically, the director who helped create the modern blockbuster will have to win. Despite a faint whiff of theatrical disappointment, Spielberg nonetheless appears to be on track for his ninth Best Director nomination, and very likely his third win in that category.
BUT WHAT ABOUT THESE BLOCKBUSTERS?
With $1.5 billion in ticket sales, Top Gun: Maverick helped bring moviegoers — especially older and indecisive moviegoers — back to theaters after two-plus years of the pandemic. It was expected to receive the Best Picture award as well as multiple nominations in the technical categories. Placing six IMAX cameras in the cockpit of a fighter jet, as cinematographer Claudio Miranda has managed, is a kind of film feat that is hard to ignore. James Cameron’s Avatar: The Way of Water (approximately $2 billion) will also feature in many of the same categories. And for the first time, a Marvel movie is poised to receive an actor nomination: Angela Bassett for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
Someone will say that such box office hits could be useful for the Oscars. Ratings tended to be higher in years when widely viewed films competed for the best picture. In recent years, Oscar producers have tried in vain to add prizes for “best popular film” and winners chosen on Twitter, and have mostly only received ridicule for their efforts. At the same time, more modest films usually won – “KODA”, “Land of Nomads”, “Parasite”, “The Shape of Water”, “Moonlight”.
WHAT SURROUNDS THE BEST PICTURE?
Ten films will be nominated for Best Picture, and seven of those slots feel like castles: Inisherin’s Banshees, Everything Everywhere, Fabelmans, Top Gun: Maverick, Tar, Avatar: The Way of the Water, and “Elvis”. I expected to see Darren Aronofsky’s “The Whale” and maybe Sarah Polley’s “Women Talking” which got the best ensemble from SAG. That would leave films like Triangle of Sorrow, All Quiet on the Western Front, and Bow of Glass: The Secret to Get Knives out hunting for last place.
WHAT IS THE “MASTO” CAMPAIGN FOR ANDREA RISEBORO?
With Yeoh, Blanchett, Williams, Viola Davis (The Queen), Ana de Armas (Blonde) and Danielle Deadwyler (Till), the Best Actress category is already ultra-competitive. But a recent celebrity-backed campaign pushed Andrea Riseborough forward for her role as the West Texas alcoholic mother in the little-known October issue of To Leslie. to receive a nomination from the Independent Spirit Awards. Instead, there were a host of top-notch stars including Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Winslet, Charlize Theron and Jennifer Aniston, whose Riseborough promotion suddenly put her on the Oscar card.
WHAT ELSE TO LOOK FOR?
Jamie Lee Curtis (Everything, Everywhere) could get his first Oscar nomination. So did Adam Sandler (“Hustle”), who was nominated by SAG for his Netflix basketball drama. The International Film Choice Award may not be the Indian sensation “RRR” (which was not selected by India but competes in other categories including best song). All Quiet on the Western Front, a highly acclaimed BAFTA-winning German film aggressively promoted by Netflix, could be a multi-nominated foreign film on Tuesday.
WHO WILL NOT, BUT SHOULD BE NOMINATED?
The academy’s policy of presenting international films by the governments of their countries of origin has had a chilling effect on filmmakers working in repressive regimes. Jafar Panahi’s acclaimed “No to Bears” will not be presented just because Iran, which imprisoned Panahi earlier this year, predictably chose not to present it. Charlotte Wells’ After the Sun, which I chose as the best film of the year, may get Paul Mescal’s well-deserved academy love, but can certainly compete in many categories, especially if they gave an Oscar for Best Needle Drop. also voted Tilda Swinton for Eternal Daughter, Keke Palmer for No, Steven Soderbergh’s Kimi for Best Picture, and Strange: The Al Yankovic Story for Best Screenplay. Craig for one of the funniest performances of the year in Bow of Glass: The Secret of the Knives Out? He deserves it if only because of the bathing suit.