A huge year for popcorn and Canada at the Oscars

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A sturdy 12 months for popcorn movies is also a superb one for Canada in nominations for the 95th Academy Awards announced Tuesday.

Two Canadian filmmakers are represented in the 10 Best Picture nominees for movies big and small: Ontario-born James Cameron’s sci-fi blockbuster “Avatar: The Way of Water,” which has 4 nominations general; and Torontonian Sarah Polley’s art home drama “Women Talking” has two, the opposite for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Multiverse spectacle “Everything Everywhere All at Once” leads the Oscar race with 11 nominations, among them Best Picture, Best Director (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert), Best Actress (Michelle Yeoh), Best Supporting Actress (Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu) and Best Supporting Actor (Ke Huy Quan).

Just behind it with 9 nominations apiece, together with Best Picture, are the German war epic “All Quiet on the Western Front” and dark Irish comedy “The Banshees of Inisherin.” Then comes famous person biopic “Elvis” with eight, Spielberg household memory piece “The Fabelmans” with seven, flyboy rouser “Top Gun: Maverick” with six and the celebrity-skewering drama “TÁR,” also with six. Rounding out the Best Picture subject is Cannes 2022 Palme d’Or winner “Triangle of Sadness,” a class satire that has three nominations.

There have been many surprise nominations in a 12 months when no clear front-runner had emerged from the Golden Globes, the Critics Choice Awards and other precursor contests.

The biggest shock of all may be the Best Picture nomination for Polley’s “Women Talking,” which many Oscar pundits had written off as a critical contender because of its poor box office outcomes. The drama of Mennonite women gathering in a barn to discuss what to do about sexual assault of their distant group is predicated on a 2018 novel of the identical title by Manitoba creator Miriam Toews.

“I’m very happy today and so grateful to the unbelievable collective of solid and crew who made ‘Women Talking,’” Polley tweeted after the nominations have been learn out in Hollywood early Tuesday. She is nominated personally for Best Adapted Screenplay, the second time she’s competed within the class. Her first was for “Away From Her” in 2006.

Polley was MIA within the Best Director class, despite the fact that she’d been considered a positive factor early on in awards season. The nominees this year are all male: Kwan and Scheinert for “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” Martin McDonagh for “The Banshees of Inisherin,” Steven Spielberg for “The Fabelmans” and Ruben Östlund for “Triangle of Sadness.”

Just eight girls have been nominated for Best Director in Oscars historical past, with three winners, all of the wins happening within the 21st century: Kathryn Bigelow for “The Hurt Locker” (2009), Chloé Zhao for “Nomadland” (2020) and Jane Campion for “The Power of the Dog” (2021).

Other Canadian Oscar nominees include Toronto’s Domee Shi, whose Toronto-set Pixar film “Turning Red,” about a teen girl who morphs into an enormous red panda, will compete for Best Animated Feature honours. In the Best Animated Short Film class, in the meantime, Calgary animators Wendy Tilby and Amanda Forbis are in with “The Flying Sailor,” the strange-but-true story of the mariner who survived the Halifax harbour explosion in the course of the First World War.

Another Torontonian celebrating an Oscar nomination is Daniel Roher for “Navalny,” competing within the Best Documentary Feature category for the story of imprisoned Russian opposition chief Alexei Navalny. In the identical category is “Fire of Love,” a Canada-U.S. co-production by Sara Dosa about two French volcano hunters.

There will no doubt be different Canadian Oscar contenders to emerge from the numerous names and movies introduced Tuesday, however there’s no less than one honorary Canuck we already know about: Best Actor nominee Brendan Fraser of “The Whale.” He was born in the united states to Canadian parents, however he went to high school in Toronto and has many fond reminiscences of the city.

It’s fairly the sight to see James Cameron and Sarah Polley competing for Best Picture gold in the same year, one for a film that has earned more than $2 billion at the worldwide box office and the opposite with a significantly extra modest displaying.

Comedian Chelsea Handler joked about the disparity at the recent Critics’ Choice Awards, comparing how a lot it price to make and sell “Avatar: The Way of Water” with how Polley selected to film her film: “James Cameron was given $350 million and Sarah Polley had to movie ‘Women Talking’ in a barn.”

Brendan Fraser in a scene from "The Whale."

Among the other surprises Tuesday have been a Best Actor nomination for Paul Mescal in “Aftersun” and a Best Actress nod for Andrea Riseborough in “To Leslie,” two critically praised indie films about troubled protagonists that many pundits deemed too small to make the Oscars listing.

“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” star Angela Bassett made historical past with her Best Supporting Actress nomination. She’s the first individual to get an Oscar nomination for acting in a Marvel Cinematic Universe film, which additionally makes her the primary girl and first individual of color to take action. She acquired her first Oscar nomination 29 years ago for enjoying Tina Turner within the 1993 biopic “What’s Love Got to Do With It?”

The many snubs included Tom Cruise, who failed to get a Best Actor nod for “Top Gun: Maverick” while the film’s helmer, Joseph Kosinski, struck out for Best Director. Viola Davis, meanwhile, was missed for Best Actress consideration for her star turn in “The Woman King.”

The 95th Academy Awards, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, shall be handed out March 12. Ballots are solid by nearly 10,000 members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences from 80 international locations.

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