Magazine article Variety

A Year for Film Lovers to Remember

Magazine article Variety

A Year for Film Lovers to Remember

Article excerpt

Decades from now, film lovers will remember 2017 as the year of "Stronger," Jake Gyllenhaal, Hong Chau in "Downsizing," and great work by Luca Guadagnino, James Mangold, Alexander Payne, Kristin Scott Thomas, Hugh Jackman and Michael Giacchino. These are just a few of the names who serve as a reminder: Everyone who received an Oscar nomination deserves it, but a lot of deserving people were also left out, for whatever reason.

For the entire 2017 awards season, Oscar remained a wide-open race. There is usually a front-runner, maybe two, for best picture. This year, at least five of the nine nominees seem like credible winners, which ensures suspense until the final envelope is opened on March 4. The best-film race includes movies that had been part of the awards conversation for many months, such as "Call Me by Your Name" and "Get Out," as well as 11th-hour entries "The Post" and "Phantom Thread."

But despite all the twists in the Oscar season, the Academy Awards were rarely the No. 1 topic at industry gatherings.

Instead, people were obsessed with Washington - not even Preston Sturges could have invented a screwball scenario like what's going on in D.C. - and 2017's extreme weather, such as hurricanes Harvey and Irma, as well as the California brushfires and mudslides.

Matching all of those in industry obsession: the Times Up and #MeToo movements. Following #OscarsSoWhite of a few years ago, the entertainment industry was reeling from the one-two punch and wondering how awards should celebrate an industry that has so much to atone for.

The film and TV industries are serious about changing things. But the Variety Archives show that in every decade since the 1950s, Hollywood questioned its lack of equality in terms of gender, race and under-represented groups like people with disabilities. Every few years, the battle cry goes up, and people form committees - and then talk it to death with little action, until the next cries of outrage a few years later. So the goal is to sustain the momentum, beyond conversations.

The January Golden Globes, the first major awards of the season, set the tone of gender politics. There was a funny monologue by Seth Meyers, a surprise appearance by Barbra Streisand and a moving acceptance speech by music-score winner Alexandre Desplat as he paid tribute to "The Shape of Water" director Guillermo del Toro. But Globes coverage was dominated not by the winners, but by speculation whether Oprah Winfrey should/could run for president in 2020, after her rousing speech promising "a new day is on the horizon. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.