Everyone has strong opinions about the Oscar nominations. Now, thanks to a format change to how the nominees were announced, there was raging about the announcement ceremony, too.
The injustice of Girls Trip star Tiffany Haddish being asked to host the ceremony only to be snubbed in the Best Supporting Actress category was chief among them, and similar gripes could be made in support of War of the Planet of the Apes star Andy Serkis, her co-host.
Then there were the time-sucking short films starring the likes of Gal Gadot, Zoe Saldana, and Salma Hayek that played before each category. (Our read: while utterly random, they were kind of beautiful, and we’re all here for any Academy project that casts Molly Shannon.)
But that’s all besides the point to the real gripe-fest: the actual nominations, led by The Shape of Water with 13 nods, one shy of the Academy record. There’s groaning to be done, sure. But also some cheering. It’s an inclusive list, including scores of representation for women: Greta Gerwig becomes the fifth woman to ever be nominated for Best Director while Jordan Peele is the fifth black person to be nominated, and Mudbound’s Rachel Morrison is the first woman to ever be nominated in Best Cinematography.
Our nerdy awards obsession, which has tracked the twists and turns of the awards season studiously, is here to distill it all so that you can sound smart gabbing about the nominations at happy hour. So from the surprising surge in support for Darkest Hour and the shocking exclusion of James Franco—did those allegations about his sexual misbehavior torpedo his chances?—here’s a look at the biggest talking points.
SNUB: Tiffany Haddish
The breakout star of Girl’s Trip was the dark horse nomination everyone was rooting for. Arguably no acting performance made as much of a mark on the cultural zeitgeist, and no performer announced themselves as an on-camera force with as much unbridled gusto. But her work wasn’t just delightfully loud and raunchy. It was a careful calibration of comedy brashness with blaring pathos to match. Oscar voters rarely reward comedy performances this big. It’s a shame that pattern continued.