|And no one saw it coming ...|
It was undeniably a great year for movies, so it's a bit ungrateful for me to complain that the 2014 Academy Awards nominations this year are so boring and predictable. But there's no wildcard nominations like Beauty and the Best or Babe for Best Picture, and the closest thing to a dark horse is Philomena. So, as I did last year, I'm going to propose some new Oscar categories to spice things up. These categories are designed to honor people and types of movies that the Academy currently ignores while also introducing some fun and excitement into Oscar Night ...
Best Voice Performance
|Next year, Vin Diesel vs. Bradley Cooper ...|
Best Opening / Credit Sequence
Who hasn't seen a movie in which the opening or closing credits were the best part of the movie? (*cough* Watchmen *cough*) Even when the credits only enhance an already great movie, there's no reason not to honor the work and ingenuity that goes into the bookends. The obvious problem with the category is deciding when the opening sequence ends and the closing begins. (Would it be fair to judge the "opening" scene of The Departed, which basically feels like the entire First Act of the movie, against -say- the "opening" if The Dark Knight, which barely lasts a few seconds? But again, that debate is all part of the fun) I'd love to see some recognition for how effective the opening of Pacific Rim was in bringing you into the world Del Toro created..
Best Casting Decision
Talk about a vital role in the film making process that gets very little love. Yeah, people love to talk about "inspired casting decisions", but why not recognize the decisions that are truly inspired with an award? The great thing about this category is that the casting could have little to no bearing on whether the finished product is actually any good. But whoever cast Charlton Heston as the chimpanzee elder in the (first) re-make of Planet of the Apes or Bill Murray as himself in Zombieland should get their due.
This year, for example, whoever cast Ben Kingsley as The Mandarin could be nominated (one of the few reasons to reward Iron Man 3), but I'd probably give the award to the casting of the Diceman in Blue Jasmine ...
Best Promotional Activities
Yep, any promotional activities would qualify for this one. Trailers obviously, but also holographic movie posters, viral campaigns, guest appearances on ESPN ... Ron Burgundy would obviously be the one to beat this year, but I'd have to give it to the first trailer for Wolf of Wall Street.
That's all for this round, so until next year ...