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Blockbusters are back, first-timers rule, and a few notable snubs – the Oscar nominations talking points

Now, the 2023 Oscar nominations are out – although some were not confirmed, there are still surprises.

Madcap sci-fi Everywhere All at Once leads the race with 11 nominations. This is thanks to four nominations for acting and being selected for the best picture. Close behind are dark comedy The Banshees Of Inisherin, and German-language film All Quiet On The Western Front with nine each.

has the complete list of Oscar nominees. Here are some highlights from the 2023 Oscar nominations.

An exciting year for first-timers

Image by Bill Nighy, Living. Pic: Sony Pictures

It was a great year for first-timers, with 16 of 20 nominations for actors who had never been nominated before.

The best actor category had no nominees, despite Bill Nighy being a wise 73-year-old; all but two of the best actress nominations were first-time nominees (Cate Blanchett, Michelle Williams, and Blanchett have won multiple times). In the supporting actor and actress categories, only Angela Bassett, Judd Hirsch, and Blanchett have been on the list previously.

US actor Brendan Fraser and Irish actor Colin Farrell are already being matched up in a “Fraser Vs Farrell” matchup, both men vying for the title of best actor.

Like Fraser, who is returning to the spotlight after a spell out of the spotlight, Everything Everywhere star Ke Huy Quan, who as a child starred in The Goonies, India Jones And The Temple Of Doom, now has his first Oscar nomination for best supporting actor, is experiencing a surge in public goodwill.

After the movie received a lot of A-List fans, including Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Winslet, Andrea Riseborough, a British actress playing the role of a character, has been voted in for the little-known film To Leslie. It’s all about your connections in Hollywood.

Sequels are history

Image: Jennifer Connelly portrays Penny Benjamin, while Tom Cruise reprises his role as Captain Pete “Maverick” Mitchell in Top Gun: Maverick. Pic: Paramount Pictures/ Scott Garfield

It was an unprecedented year for sequels.

Two sequels were nominated for the Best Picture category, Top Gun: Maverick (and Avatar: The Way of Water) for the first time.

Only eight sequels have been nominated in Oscar history for best picture, and they have never been chosen in the same year.

Follow-ups to The Godfather and The Lord of the Rings are among those that have made it past the cut.

Oscars-nominated films are back

Image: Avatar: The Way Of Water. Pic by 20th Century Studios

One of the most common complaints about the Oscars is the fact that many films chosen by industry insiders and critics aren’t the movies that we love to watch in real life.

Three big-name films made this year have been nominated for the best picture category: Avatar: The Way Of Water and Top Gun: Maverick.

They were all widely watched and performed well at the box-office. Avatar broke box office records, taking more than $2bn (PS1.6bn), Top Gun taking $1.5bn, and Elvis taking over $280mn, making it the third most successful music biopic since 1970s.

This year, however, we may have even enjoyed the ceremony with the star-studded audience in March.

Is streaming the future of entertainment?

Image by Felix Kammerer, All Quiet On The Western Front. Pic: Netflix/ Reiner Bajo

Despite predictions that streaming giants might crowd out traditional cinema releases and Coda, last year’s winner, coming from Apple TV+ this year, the top category had only one streamer – Netflix’s All Quiet On The Western Front.

The other top picture contenders were all released in cinemas. However, some of them have been made available on streaming services.

Both Pinocchio and Glass Onion received just one nomination despite Netflix’s campaigning efforts.

According to Deadline, streaming services received approximately half the nominations last year. Netflix, Apple, and Amazon got a total 19 nominations. This is down from 37 nominations last year.

It seems that the death of cinema has been exaggerated or postponed, with the lifting pandemic restrictions fueling a return.

All male directors (yawn)

Image Steven Spielberg is one of the best male directors for The Fabelmans

After female filmmakers were excluded completely, there are more men named Daniel on the best director nominations lists than there are women.

Although Aftersun’s directors Sarah Polley (Women Talking), Charlotte Wells (Aftersun) and Gina Prince–Bythewood were all mentioned, six men (Steven Spielberg (Martin McDonagh), Todd Field (Women Talking), Ruben Ostlund (Daniel Kwan) made it to the final cut.

One thing is certain: despite two consecutive wins by women in the category (Chloe Zhao for Nomadland in 2021 and Jane Campion for The Power Of The Dog in 2022), it won’t be a woman who takes home the gong this time.

This was a disappointing result for a category that had, up until 2021, only had one female Oscars winner (Kathryn Blow for The Hurt Locker 2010). It’s not very impressive.

Great year for Irish stars…

Image: Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson reunite in The Banshees of Inisherin. Pic by 20th Century Studios

It was the same with the BAFTA nominees. Irish stars are enjoying a moment at the Oscars this year. Culture Minister Catherine Martin called the success “a testament to the talent in Ireland”.

Colin Farrell and Paul Mescal both are up for the best actor award for The Banshees Of Inisherin, and Aftersun, respectively. Farrell’s supporting categories co-stars Barry Keoghan, Kerry Condon, and Brendan Gleeson are also in the running for the award.

Martin McDonagh’s dark comedy The Banshees Of Inisherin, which is about a friendship that is in decline, received nine nominations. This was only beaten by the sci-fi thriller Everywhere All at Once.

Normal People’s Mescal is up for nomination for his portrayal as a young father Calum in Aftersun. Aftersun follows Calum and Sophie on holiday in Turkey with Frankie Corio playing the part of Sophie. Celia Rowlson Hall portrays Sophie 20 years later looking back on the trip.

The Quiet Girl, an Irish language feature film, has been nominated for an Academy Award. It was shortlisted for Best International Feature Film along with All Quiet On The Western Front (Argentina, 1985, Close, and EO.

…but not so great for British actors

Image Andrea Riseborough, a surprise inclusion to the best actress shortlist for her performance in To Leslie

Only two of the acting nominees this year are British: Bill Nighy for Living and Andrea Riseborough for To Leslie. This is the lowest number of British nominees for the categories in a decade.

Five of the 20 nominees last year were British. The number was eight the year before.

British stars who could have had a shot with British stars

Both Olivia Colman (previous Oscar winner) and Eddie Redmayne (previous Oscar nominees) were not nominated for their performances in Empire of Light, The Good Nurse, and Empire of Light, respectively.

Emma Thompson may have also been eligible for a BAFTA nomination for her performance in Good Luck To You Leo Grande.


Image: Jalyn Hill (left) and Danielle Deadwyler, Till. Pic by Lynsey Wetterspoon/Orion Pictures

Each year, some stars and films are inevitably left out the Oscars cut. Sadly, that’s showbiz.

Notable absences this year raise questions about diversity. They include Till, a biographical movie based on the true story Mamie Till-Bradley’s pursuit of justice following the racist murder of her 14year-old son Emmett Till. This film, directed by Danielle Deadwyler, is a biographical film that examines the life of Mamie Till Bradley. Gina Prince-Bythewood’s The Woman King stars Gina Deadwyler, for which many predicted a best actress nomination for Viola Davis.

Angela Bassett is also nominated for supporting actress – Marvel’s first acting nomination. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was not nominated for best film, despite its strong performance at the box office.

Babylon by Damien Chazelle, a tribute to silent film’s wild days, received three nominations for costume, music, and production design. However, it didn’t get in the acting or directed categories and was not awarded best film.

This film had a budget $80m (about PS65m) and has so far made less than $30m at the box office (about PS24m). It also divided critics so maybe this is not too surprising.

The Brenaissance

Image by Brendan Fraser in The Whale. Pic: A24

Brendan Fraser was nominated for an Oscar after receiving a number of awards and nominations for his performance in The Whale. This marks his return to the lead in a major movie for 12 years.

Fraser, who also starred in The Mummy and George Of The Jungle plays an obese man who is trying to reconnect with his child. He has received standing ovations from film festivals for this emotional performance.

He said that he was “overjoyed” to be nominated, and that playing Charlie had “profoundly altered my life.”

He said, “I wouldn’t have this nomination [director] Darren Aronofsky and [writer] Samuel D Hunter and [producers] a24 and the extraordinary cast of crew who gave me my gift of Charlie”

“A gift that I didn’t expect, but has profoundly changed the course of my life.” We are grateful.


Image: Rihanna

You don’t have to be concerned about the Oscars film stars. Lady Gaga and Rihanna could also be present on the red carpet.

Lady Gaga sang Shallow with Bradley Cooper, her A Star Is Born star, on Oscars night 2019. It was a performance that generated a million romance rumours. Please, more of this.

She’s been nominated for the Best Song category for Hold My Hand from Top Gun: Maverick this year, while Rihanna is up for Lift Me Up From Black Panther: Wakanda forever.

Could this be the year of pop superstars? It could have been even three, but Taylor Swift’s Carolina from Where The Crawdads sing didn’t make it.

Nominated are Naatu Naatu (RRR), This Is A Life From Everything Everywhere All at Once and Applause (Tell It Like A Woman).

This is proof that even Oscar-winning actors love a “Dick” joke

Image: My Year Of Dicks. Pic: Cat’s Pyjamas / Wonder Killer

The Oscar-winning actor Riz Ahmed and M3GAN star Allison Williams discussing Dick were the highlights of the nomination announcements.

My Year Of Dicks is a 25-minute-long psychedelic film about a teenage American trying to have sex. It was directed by Sara Gunnarsdottir and created by Pamela Ribon.

Ahmed, normally composed, had to take a deep breath after uttering the film’s X rating title. The audience laughed as he did this.

Williams was a co-host and used to be sexy scenes from Girls. She can also be seen laughing.

You can do many Google searches to find the short film that is not well-known around the world. It is highly NSFW (not safe enough for work).

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The Oscars will be broadcast live on Sky Showcase from midnight on Sunday, 12 March. Sky News will live-broadcast the Oscars ceremony in Hollywood on Sunday 12 March at midnight. Sky News will also be present at the Vanity Fair party, Monday 13 March on Breakfast with Kay Burley.


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