Image: Sony/Marvel Studios
to say that Spider-Man: No Way Home is a success might underestimate things. Tom Holland’s third solo outing as webhead is over multiverse breaking hit and is currently expected to break $1 billion at the box office by the end of the holiday weekend. But that’s not enough for Marvel, whose movies were usually pretty good this year box office successes. They want the gold, honey, they want… an Oscar!
In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Marvel Studios’ Kevin Feige and Sony chairman Tom Rothman believe the film deserves a shot at a Best Picture nomination, which was done just once before with Black Panther at the 2019 Oscars. (It lost to Green Book that year and inspired its star, Mahershala Ali, to ask Marvel if he could be Blade.) Rothman has argued that the success of No Way Home and its “excellent film production” cannot be ignored in the award season. “High-quality commercial is really hard to do… And this is what the Academy needs to stay connected to.” Meanwhile, Feige compared this film to Return of the King, saying that this film served as “a celebration of both our Homecoming trilogy and the five other incarnations of Spider-Man that happened before.”
Earlier in the month, Feige talked about how he believed the Academy had a bias towards cape movies, saying the studio is “always short of the Marvel logo and because of a genre bias that definitely exists.” It’s a sentiment Rothman and co-producer Amy Pascal share, with the latter pointing out that all movies matter, even those with costumed lunatics hitting each other in the face. In addition, she hopes that because several members of the Academy’s board grew up with the earlier Spidey films, they’re more likely to give the film its supposed value. “I think it would be great if the Academy recognized all kinds of films. And I hope that since there’s a guaranteed 10 movies, and since there’s a whole new membership, maybe they will.”
To aid the process, Sony and Marvel are planning an active For Your Consideration campaign, from adding No Way Home to the streaming service for Academy members, to targeted screenings and interviews that make these pandemic times possible. Previously, Marvel tried to get an FYC campaign for Avengers: Endgame going, but the Academy very much said “no” beyond nominating it for visual effects, which it lost until 1917. Given some of the pre-release buzz around Eternals Engaged Director Chloe Zhao Surprises Feige’s Mind With Practical Locations And natural lighting, it feels like they were hoping that one would be their Oscar movie, but then the movie was a bit got out of hand. But now that No Way Home is a blockbuster, keeping movie theaters close for the holidays and just delivering fans what they want, the two companies are already laying their eggs in this basket.
Whether you think there’s a bias against superhero movies at the Oscars (there’s kind of, at least for the upper layer awards), the two studios could have eyes bigger than their stomachs on this front. While No Way Home is pretty good, it also doesn’t do anything that hasn’t been done outside of its own genre in the past ten years, and the fact that it exists, coupled with about ten other films, doesn’t do it any favors. The producers and Rothman may argue that No Way Home is about ‘personal sacrifice’ and ‘the greater good’, but it is primarily a film that exists to sell you something – things that you have questioned. like back in the day, or something that will strike in a few years and sell you something again.
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We’ll find out in the coming months whether the Academy deems No Way Home worthy of being nominated for non-technical awards, let alone winning them. In the meantime, tell us: Do you think the film is capable or worthy of getting Oscars, and which ones?
[via The Hollywood Reporter]
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