The film “Everything Everywhere All At Once” was nominated for 11 Oscars on Tuesday and is leading the race for the prestigious statuettes, with stiff competition for best picture from the Irish tragicomedy “The Banshees of Inisherin” and the very personal “The Fabelmans” by Steven Spielberg.
This independent comedy was a great success in theaters when it was released in the spring. It is ahead of “The Banshees of Inisherin” and the German feature film “In the West, nothing new”, each nominated in nine categories.
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The Academy also honored the blockbusters “Top Gun: Maverick” and “Avatar: the way of the water”, which largely filled the dark rooms too often neglected since the pandemic.
“Everything Everywhere All at Once”: Kung-fu to bind
They are both nominated for Best Picture. In this queen category, they will have to face, among other things, the biopic “Elvis” on the legend of rock’n’roll, the moving “The Fabelmans” in which Steven Spielberg reveals his childhood, the impressive “Tár” where Cate Blanchett portrays a ruthless conductor, and the last Cannes gold palm “Without filter”.
With its crazy sci-fi storyline, “Everything Everywhere All At Once” tells the story of a laundromat owner exhausted by her administrative worries, suddenly immersed in parallel universes.
In addition to the Best Picture Oscar, its creators Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert are also nominated for Best Director. The other characters in this feature film are also worth a nomination for the statuette for best supporting role to their performers, actor Ke Huy Quan and actresses Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu.
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Diversity, the eternal debate
Its headliner, Malaysian Michelle Yeoh, already won a Golden Globe in early January. She is now the second Asian in the history of the Oscars to be nominated for the statuette of the best actress and her duel with Cate Blanchett (“Tar”) promises to be very disputed.
The other nominations in this category, however, are likely to fuel criticism of the Oscars’ lack of diversity, which has been routine since the hashtag #Oscarssowhite was launched in 2015. No black actresses made the list, despite Viola’s notable performances. Davis in the action movie “The Woman King” and Danielle Deadwyler in “Till,” which confronts America’s segregationist past.
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The Academy preferred Ana de Armas, for her interpretation of a perpetually brutalized Marilyn Monroe in “Blonde”, Michelle Williams, who plays Steven Spielberg’s mother in “The Fabelmans”, and Andrea Riseborough for the unexpected “To Leslie”.
On social networks, a beginning of controversy also surrounds the best director category, where only men appear this year, including the essential Spielberg, already awarded at the Golden Globes.
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For Best Actor, Colin Farrell was nominated for his role as an Irish islander overwhelmed by the sudden severance of ties with his lifelong friend, in ‘The Banshees of Inisherin’. He will notably face Austin Butler, larger than life in his incarnation of the Elvis Presley myth, and Brendan Fraser, named for his character as an obese professor reclusive at home in “The Whale”.
Between ambitious or original narratives and great popular successes, the suspense is at its height this year and the predictions promise to be difficult. “This year is one of the most uncertain”, summarized before the announcements the specialized journalist Clayton Davis, of the magazine “Variety”. He said he spoke “more than any year” to many sources among the voters of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to probe their votes and try to see more clearly. “And I’ve never known so little in my entire career!” »he added to AFP.
“Top Gun: Maverick”, crossing the limit
The predictions are made even more complicated by the recent influx of new members of the Academy from abroad, and to whom some attribute for example the success of the South Korean film “Parasite”, in 2020.
In recent years, the Academy has awarded independent films less known to the general public, such as “Nomadland” and “CODA”. In this context, the fate of the second part of “Avatar” and the high-sounding sequel to “Top Gun” will be closely monitored on March 12.
Because the two films are widely seen as saviors of dark rooms in difficulty – the giant Cineworld, world number two in the operation of cinemas, for example filed for bankruptcy this fall. James Cameron’s film topped the symbolic $2 billion mark at the box office last weekend, and Tom Cruise’s made around $1.5 billion.
According to Clayton Davis, “Top Gun” 2 could “win Best Picture”.