Are genre films, franchise films, action films, superhero films – which made up so many of the biggest and most popular films of the last year, unfairly overlooked at the Oscars?
Before the Oscars 2023 nominations were revealed, it was suggested that box office hits The Batman, Top Gun: Maverick, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Avatar: The Way of Water, Jurassic World: Dominion – films that made more than $6billion at the box office last year – would feature heavily.
In the end, they had an ok showing. Angela Bassett secured the Marvel’s first acting nomination for her role in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Top Gun: Maverick is up for Best Picture. None of them came close to leading the nominations, though. That honour went to Everything Everywhere All at Once (with 11 nominations), closely followed by The Banshees Of Inisherin and All Quiet On The Western Front with nine nods each.
Paul Dano stars in two huge movies eligible for this year’s awards. The Fabelmans, directed by Steven Spielberg, could be a multiple award-winner, with seven nominations including Best Picture.
Spielberg’s autobiographical story is beautifully made, wonderfully acted, and a distillation of everything we’ve ever loved about his films over so many decades. As a love letter to filmmaking, it was instantly flagged for Oscars glory.
But The Batman, in which Dano plays The Riddler did not get a look in outside of the technical categories – with nominations in Best Make-up and Hairstyling, Best Visual Effects and Best Sound. Although his co-star Colin Farrell was nominated as Best Actor for The Banshees of Inisherin, he arguably put in as good a turn as the Penguin.