We know that science fiction isn’t always given a fair shot when it comes to award seasons. There are famous snubs of statuettes and the offering of technical awards as an olive branch by the Academy without really attempting to admit that a sci-fi film be mentioned, or albeit win, a major category.
As a fan, it genuinely boggles my mind that science fiction films aren’t more accepted. The Academy Awards are meant to award outstanding achievements in film and yes, the usual dramas and odd comedies do a fine job of portraying wonderful characters and usually enchanting stories, but how much more work is it to create a world in which characters and stories can exist? How can you look at a film like Annie Hall (personal opinion: totally overrated) and say it’s the year’s best film when George Lucas brought audiences Star Wars?
I’ll save my rants for another Tinder date and move on to the point which is that the Academy has been somewhat kind to sci-fi this year. Mad Max: Fury Road is the second most nominated film after The Revenant with nominations for Best Director and Best Picture, but obviously missing an ode to Charlize Theron as the beyond encompassing Furiosa. The Martian also received a Best Picture nod alongside a Best Actor nomination for Matt Damon as astronaut Mark Watney as well as five other nominations. It is likely that neither will win the ultimate Best Picture but it’s a shame that critical and fan darling Mad Max isn’t considered more of a contender.
Alex Garland’s hit Ex Machina was nominated for Best Original Screenplay as well as Best Visual Effects. The recent Star Wars: The Force Awakens also managed to pick up the usual technical award nominations for Best Sound Editing, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score, Best Sound Mixing and Best Visual Effects.
Tune into the 88th Annual Academy Awards on February 28th to see if any sci-fi pulls off a stunner.
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