By Vishal Sangwan
Academy has often made some questionable choices when giving out Oscars. Sometimes they try to rectify it by giving it out for a lesser performance later but in that they do injustice to someone else and get caught in a vicious cycle.
Here is a list of 10 times Academy screwed up and then tried to cover up!
What he won for- The Revenant | What he should have won for- What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
Oscar eluded DiCaprio for so long that it became an internet meme. Most of the press around ‘The Revenant’ was focused on the lengths Leo went to solidify it as his Oscar winner. Still it just did not feel as Oscar worthy as some of Leo’s previous nominations, particularly ‘What’s Eating Gilbert Grape’. As Arnie, a mentally disabled teenager, DiCaprio created a character that was tragic yet funny.
What he won for- Scent Of A Woman | What he should have won for- The Godfather
If you think Leo won his Oscar late, just remember it was Al Pacino’s 8th nomination that finally fetched him the trophy but was it really his best role? Far from it. What’s hard to believe is Al Pacino’s Michael Corleone (The Godfather), despite being nominated both the years went home empty handed. While he was great in ‘Scent Of A Woman’, the same year Daniel Day-Lewis was nominated for his stellar performance in ‘In The Name Of The Father’ and though Mr. Lewis probably has enough Oscars in his cabinet he must have felt robbed because of this compensatory award to Al Pacino.
What he won for- Crazy Heart | What he should have won for- The Big Lebowski
By the time Jeff Bridges won an Oscar for playing washed-up country star Bad Blake in 2010’s ‘Crazy Heart’, he had received four nominations but none of these were for his most iconic role of all time. Comedies are often overlooked by the Academy and it’s criminal that Bridges was not nominated but there’s no denying that ‘The Big Lebowski’ would not be the cult favourite it is today were it not for his hilarious performance as The Dude.
What he won for- The Color Of Money | What he should have won for- The Hustler
In ‘The Hustler’, Paul Newman delivers a legendary performance as Eddie Felson. 25 years later the Academy gave Paul Newman an Oscar for his reprisal of the role in Martin Scorsese’s, ‘The Color Of Money’. And although he was great (of course, he’s Paul Newman) in ‘The Color Of Money’, this felt an award for not appreciating the initial performance.
What she won for- A Beautiful Mind | What she should have won for- Requiem For A Dream
While Connelly was great as Alicia Nash through the years, but it could not come close to what she achieved in ‘Requiem for a Dream’ the previous year. Her strong depiction of a drug addict in Darren Aronofsky’s psychological-thriller, received high praises from the audience and critics alike.
What he won for- Gladiator | What he should have won for- A Beautiful Mind
It seemed like The Academy was rewarding box office success when Ridley Scott’s epic ‘Gladiator’ won Best Picture and Russell Crowe took home the Oscar for his lead role as Maximus. The movie felt like it was trying to be Mel Gibson’s ‘Braveheart’. Crowe’s role was essentially an action hero and was the weakest of his three back-to-back nominations.
What he won for- Training Day | What he should have won for- Malcolm X
Denzel’s dirty cop in Training Day had fans going crazy everywhere but was it his best performance? Or even the best of the year? His performances in ‘Malcolm X’ and ‘The Hurricane’ were much more deserving. In fact the same year Russell Crowe delivered an outstanding performance in ‘A Beautiful Mind’. Russell Crowe and Denzel Washington could have swapped their Oscars and all would be well.
What she won for- Ghost | What she should have won for- The Color Purple
The nomination for ‘Ghost’ felt like an apology letter. It was somehow nominated for Best Picture and won for both Best Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress (Whoopi Goldberg). Five years earlier, in her debut, Whoopi Goldberg delivered the performance of her career in ‘The Color Purple’, which was nominated for a whopping eleven awards but didn’t win a single one.
What he won for- As Good As It Gets | What he should have won for- Chinatown
Sure, Jack Nicholson was great in ‘As Good as It Gets’. But that performance pales in comparison to his performance in ‘Chinatown’, a cinema classic. He is in literally every scene in Chinatown and it was his performance that separated the movie from every other crime genre film.
What he won for- Million Dollar Baby | What he should have won for- The Shawshank Redemption
One of the greatest movies ever made, ‘The Shawshank Redemption’ did not win any Oscars, heavily losing out to ‘Forrest Gump’. Morgan Freeman’s Red is easily his most iconic role. His delivery of “Hope is a dangerous thing” in itself deserved an Oscar. Most people probably can’t quote a single line from the ‘Million Dollar Baby’ or recall that Freeman narrated it.
So who is doing the campaign for Johnny Depp’s Oscar?