Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Wednesday Oscar Retrospective: The Big Snub of 2010

Welcome to a new weekly feature here at Movies with Abe, Wednesday Oscar Retrospective. The Big Snub is the second in a series of projects looking back at the past eight years of the Oscars, dating back to the first ceremony I watched and closely followed. Since I started this feature back in 2010, I’ll now be filling in the past two years.

Each year, the Oscar nominations announcement presents several notable omissions. This series is devoted to analyzing the biggest and most shocking snub of all (in any category). It has nothing to do with personal opinion but rather with what seemed likely at the time and what most people were predicting. Once again, this is a film/director/actor who didn’t even earn a nomination.

The Big Snub of 2010:

Christopher Nolan for Best Director

Why it was all set to happen: After “The Dark Knight” was shut out in the top categories despite strong precursor performance two years earlier, Nolan finally had a surefire hit that was going to go the distance. His first two DGA nods, for “Memento” and “The Dark Knight,” didn’t lead to anything, but “Inception” was one of the most popular films of the year and had the awards momentum behind it to get there. No one could argue that Nolan was overdue.

Why it probably didn’t: Some people didn’t get the movie, and others probably thought it was overrated. This kick in the pants for Nolan demonstrated that voters only liked the film enough to include in a ten-wide Best Picture field, not to recognize its individual merits aside from technical competence and Nolan’s screenplay. It also didn’t help that the film fits into the science fiction genre, which voters don’t tend to respect, with few exceptions.

What took its place: The Coen Brothers for “True Grit,” receiving their third directorial nomination.

Consolation prize: Two nominations, for producing and writing. If he couldn’t break into the directing race for this, hope isn’t high that he’ll ever be able to do it.

Come back next week for a look at the Surprise Inclusion of 2011!

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