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Who’s Getting The Oscar and Why It Still Matters

Despite the fact that the industry was devastated and many major releases were bumped ahead to this year, 2020 ended up serving a rich and diverse crop of Oscar nominees. The films’ prevailing topics—institutionalized racism, protesters’ rights, sexual abuse, and the tanking economy—seem ripped from today’s headlines, with even the period pieces feeling as current as the Capitol attack on January 6. As we watched these films through links and on streaming services, our isolation was reflected in the dark cinematic scenarios, most nominations going to works about the art of valiantly fighting authority and oppression while barely getting by. Not long ago, Oscar voters had a bias against streaming services because they were cutting into the movie theater biz, but now it’s accepted that that’s the way the business has shifted. And besides, last year these services stepped in and saved our asses. The winners will be announced on April 25 in a scaled-down, televised ceremony that will provide a return to semi-normalcy in the form of boosting the industry while giving us the cathartic chance to watch big stars alternately squirm and rejoice.

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