Me and The Academy Awards have a fantastic relationship. No; I haven’t won one, and I probably won’t but it gives me a lot of quality content. Every year, I predict who is going to win to great effect. And, it was one of the first posts I did where I discussed a subject instead of just reviewing a film. But, you see; the Academy Awards announced a new category called “Best Popular Film”, this was no doubt to try and make the Oscars more relevant and try and fix the subject I described earlier . It followed a lot of outrage, and it resulted (eventually) in the Academy’s postponement of such award. Because, the Academy Awards always do well for me, I thought I should put some input into this.

First off, I think we need to discuss something fundamentally wrong with this category. What constitutes a popular film, a film that is successful? So, by definition – the academy are admitting that the films they look at to win or look to nominate are not popular. And, taking that even further, does that mean a film that is “popular” like Dunkirk would not have a chance to win the “Best Picture” and instead be nominated for “Best Popular Film”. The category just doesn’t make sense, from top to bottom. From the name, to the makings of the category. It is just unneeded and is only there so it can get more viewers, because to many, the films that win are the ones they promise they will watch but never do.

Honestly, it is not hard, if a film is good it should be nominated. Of course, there are many, many good films in a year but taking 2008 as an example; no matter what genre or release date, or box office performance a film makes it should be nominated if it is great just like The Dark Knight. And that is why this years nominations are going to be so fun to look at, Disney is pushing Black Panther as a serious contender and it will be interesting to see what the Academy do with it – whether they nominate it or not. And it isn’t as though the Academy aren’t getting better with making the nominations more relevant, in recent years they have widening the “Best Picture” category, last year saw the hugely successful Get Out be nominated and who knows where a film like A Quiet Place may go this year, Dunkirk did well last year too, so as long as a film is good and as long as the Academy genuinely give it a chance then this category isn’t needed and it won’t undermine the entire show

And then, of course we have the headache that is the “Best Animation Award”. This category already gets a lot of hate from people, and I am sure if your reading this I need not explain why. But, I still will. Many people view this award as a certain Disney win, since it’s introduction in 2001 twelve of the seventeen wins have gone to Disney. Furthermore, all the other films have pretty much been won by the biggest box office performance of that year for an animation award. So, when this award gets introduced, it will probably just be given to the biggest film of the year, just like for Animation.

For me, what is probably most annoying is that this is a just a cheap way out for the Academy and by introducing a “Best Popular Film” it will mean that they won’t win the coveted “Best Picture” award, or even worse won’t be nominated for it and that is a damn shame. Seriously, it is not hard. If a film is good, it deserves to be nominated regardless of box office or popularity

Adam Zenasni

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