Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Wednesday Oscar Retrospective: The Big Snub of 2014

Welcome to a returning weekly feature here at Movies with Abe, Wednesday Oscar Retrospective. The Big Snub was 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. With the 2014 Oscar season wrapped, it’s time to take a look back at the past year.

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 2014

The Lego Movie for Best Animated Feature

Why it was all set to happen: Forget “Selma,” its director, or its star. There were indicators that many people didn’t see that film and that it might be left out. This film, on the other hand, was a resounding success right off the bat. It was the first out of the gate with an early February release. By the time awards season got started, it was splitting votes with “Big Hero 6” and “How to Train Your Dragon 2” for industry prizes, but there’s no denying the originality and cleverness of its format and plot.

Why it probably didn’t: This comes down to the same thing that got 2012’s Big Snub, director Ben Affleck, omitted from the race: everyone presumed that someone else was voting for the obvious choice. The Best Animated Feature category has included more diversity in recent years in terms of international films, and both the foreign contenders, “Song of the Sea” and “The Tale of the Princess Kaguya,” managed to break through, leaving this film out in the cold.

Who took his place: Those two were joined by this film’s top competition, “Big Hero 6,” the eventual winner, and “How to Train Your Dragon 2.” The fifth slot went to “The Boxtrolls,” which bested its fellow Golden Globe nominee “The Book of Life.”

Consolation prize: The film’s signature tune, “Everything is Awesome,” which was snubbed by Golden Globe voters, did earn a nomination and made for one of the most memorable performances of the evening.

Come back next week for a look at our next feature: The Surprise Inclusion of 2014. If you have a prediction or a suggestion, please leave it in the comments. There a few contenders for this one, so chime in if you have a pick!

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