The Oscars: What you need to know

March 13th will mark the 95th Academy Awards ceremony hosted at the Dolby theatre in LA.

The Nominees for this year seem to be the strongest since pre-pandemic, with Jimmy Kimmel returning as host for the third time, with the event also see Rihanna perform “Lift me up” from the Black Panther soundtrack.

On a more disputed note, there are many question marks going into the event with an official ‘crisis team’ on hand for the first time ever post-Will Smith outburst at Chris Rock at last year’s event.

Will Smith was handed a ten-year ban following his assault on Chris Rock

The nomination of Andrea Riseborough though has probably brought the biggest issue of them all. Her inclusion in the best actress category has come as a surprise after her performance in ‘To Leslie’ only made $27,322 at box office in the US. While her inclusion has received animosity due to its celebrity promotions and unfair campaign tactics, surprisingly the biggest issue it deals with is the snub of other stars. Viola Davis was snubbed again for her performance in The Women King, while Margo Robbie provided probably one of the best performances of her career in Babylon, which she also wasn’t nominated for.

Post BAFTA’s, the Oscars also comes under the question of its role and promotion of inclusivity. This year’s event has come under the limelight for not one women nomination for best director. Black stories such as Till, Nope and The Women King were all under looked too. But it must be said that year’s event breaks the history books for the nominations for Asian actors. While Everything, Everywhere All at Once plays it part with the likes of Michelle Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan as frontrunners, the performances of Hong Chau in The Whale is one to watch. Ana de Armas also marks the first actress of Cuban descent to be nominated. 

This year’s nominations are spread out with at least eight films receiving five nominations. Cate Blanchett is favourite to win best actress, while Brendon Fraser and Austin Butler are level for best actor, with the latter winning the best actor award at the BAFTA’s. Fraser meanwhile snubbed attending, only to win a SAG (Screen Actors Guild) award a week later. Steven Spielberg and Daniel’s are favourites to win best directors, but Edward Berger’s BAFTA win will give him an outside chance. Kerry Condon’s role in The Banshees of Inisherin is also one to look out for in an actress in a supporting role.  But expect All Quiet on the Western Frontand Everything Everywhere all at once to scoop most of the awards.

This year’s event promises to be both refreshing and intriguing at the same time. While the ides of the Oscars crisis team playing a role seeming to be unlikely, I do expect there to be some surprise award presenters. There will be several present such as star of A Quiet Place,Emily Blunt, along with A sound of Metal’s Riz Ahmed. There are several other stars such as Michael B. Jordan, Dwayne Johnson, Zoe Salsaña, Samuel L Jackson and Janelle Monáe announcing the awards. A second set of announcers where also confirmed including Florence Pugh, Nicole Kidman, Paul Dano, John Travolta, Andrew Garfield and finally Halle Berry.

Expect a rejuvenated event after two years of drama for the academy. 

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