By Kate Conn0r
Not caught up on this year’s Oscar’s drama? Keep reading for a roundup of 2023’s biggest cinematic surprises and scandals as we take a deep dive into all things Oscar’s.
- Lack of Diversity (shocker)
This year’s Oscar’s were expected to be one of the most diverse “ever”, but final nominations for the acting and directing categories have (once again) disappointed with their lack of diversity. Many expected Michelle Yeo (Everything, Everywhere All At Once), Viola Davis (The Woman King) and Danielle Deadwyler (Till) to front the Best Actress nominations. Out of the three, only Michelle Yeoh made the final cut, leaving the category with only two non-white actresses- Ana De Armas (Blonde) alongside Yeoh.
2. Irish Sweep
The 2023 Oscar nominations saw Irish stars sweep the categories clean. In total, Irish films claimed a whopping 14 nominations across the board. Rising stars Paul Mescal and Barry Keoghan have nabbed their first Oscar nominations for Aftersun and The Banshee of Inisherin, respectively, which has been nominated for 9 awards.
This year will also see an Irish-on-Irish opposition within the Best Actor category, as Paul Mescal and Colin Farrell both compete for the award.
3. Every Nomination, Every Category, All At Once
Everything, Everywhere All At Once strode ahead with nominations and is the single most nominated movie this year with 11 nominations in total. The film is featured in four out of the “Big Five” Oscar categories, consisting of Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Screenplay. The only category Everything, Everywhere All At Once did not receive a nomination in was Best Actor.
There is even a category with two nominations for Everything, Everywhere All At Once. Both Stephanie Hsu and Jamie Lee Curtis received nominations for Best Supporting Actress.
4. First Marvel Win
The new Black Panther movie, Wakanda Forever, sees Marvel’s first ever actor award nomination. Angela Bassett received a nomination for her supporting role in the movie – making her the first actress to do so and also the first woman of colour. In addition to Bassett’s nomination, Wakanda Forever received four other nominations including Best Visual Effects and Best Music (Original Score).
Wakanda Forever was waited for with bated breath and many were unsure how the movie would work around the passing of Black Panther himself, Chadwick Boseman. The film, as a whole, feels like a tribute to Boseman and it was done beautifully and delicately.
- Don’t Worry Darling
Oscar nominations are not without their individual controversies, and no movie garnered as much attention in 2022 than Don’t Worry Darling. With PR rumours, possible cast disagreements and spitting allegations, Don’t Worry Darling was hardly out of the headlines.
The gossip surrounding the movie took precedence over critical, unbiased accounts of the film itself. Most of the headlines and articles focused on the ‘relationship’ between lead actor, Harry Styles, and director, Olivia Wilde. It left a bad aftertaste for some; many felt Wilde had been unprofessional. This distaste for the movie was furthered with the publication of the Oscars shortlist at the end of the year. Don’t Worry Darling was shortlisted for Best Original Score, which created a blow up online as The Batman’s soundtrack did not. However, despite the uproar neither film ended up on the final nominations for that award. The Batman did however get nominated in other categories.
2. To Leslie
Many were surprised to see Andrea Risenborough (To Leslie) nominated for Best Actress, as it seemed to appear out of nowhere. To Leslie is a small indie film that suddenly seemed to gain traction after notable names, such as Charlize Theron, began tweeting about it. Risenborough trumped Danielle Deadwyler (Till) and Viola Davis (The Woman King) for Best Actress nominations; both which had a much wider reach and appreciation in comparison.
It has since come to light that there might have been foul tactics at play. In a very everyone-knows-everyone industry like Hollywood, the Oscars can sometimes feel like a “popularity contest”. It was found out, though different sources, that the wife of director, Michael Morris, had been campaigning and “emailing friends in the Academy” to increase To Leslie’s chances for nominations. She also apparently hosted a gathering at her home for an unlicensed pre-screening of the movie, which is against Academy regulations.
And if you didn’t know, now you do. Between diversity disappointments and scandalous surprise nominations, we can’t wait for 12 March.