- Awards -Chadwick Boseman Gets Snubbed, Anthony Hopkins Doesn't Show, & That's The Oscars, Folks!
Some might argue that the 2021 Oscars didn't really know how to open a show, after it traded a host monologue and banter with Regina King toasting the nominees in an unfamiliarly demure fashion for the Academy Awards. (She might have brought the glitz and glam with an intergalactically fabulous gown, but sparks, the monologue did not have.) But close a show? Now, anyone who watched the three-plus hour ceremony would agree that, no, the Oscars did not know how to close its show.
Blame not the nominees, not the winners, and not the presenters, but several key decisions made that seemed to set the Oscars up for an end that fizzled, rather than sizzled. Let's take a look at those choices:
The Choice: Mix It Up
The Steven Soderbergh-produced event decided to mix up the order of awards, presenting Best Picture at the beginning of the event, and saving Best Actress and Best Actor until after Best Picture.
The Rationale: Best Picture can be a snooze, particularly during a year with so many unknown films. Save Best Actor and Best Actress for the end, so viewers are incentivized to stay up and see their favorite A-list stars!
The Problem: Not saving Best Picture for last minimizes the very award that's supposed to anchor the show.
The Choice: Keep In Memoriam Short And Snappy
Anyone who experienced 2020 would assume that In Memoriam would be a lengthy segment for the Oscars. Not only did COVID-19 tear its way through the nation, but this year also saw the loss of legends like Cicely Tyson and Christopher Plummer, as well as rising stars like Chadwick Boseman. But, rather than give the segment the time it deserved, the Oscars flipped through In Memoriam so fast, audiences could feel as if they were playing a memory game.
The Rationale: No doubt, the Oscars saw the runtime approaching that three-hour mark. And, heck, since Boseman was likely to pick up the statue, his win would be enough of a tribute to those we lost anyway, right? Right?
The Problem: Well, see below. And rather than linger a little longer on some of the faces of legends we lost, the Oscars chose to waste five minutes on a silly trivia game that, yes, provided us with Glenn Close memes, but little else of note.
The Choice: Save Best Actor For Last
After posthumously winning a Golden Globe and SAG Award for his role in Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Chadwick Boseman seemed a lock for the Oscar. So why not end the awards show on an emotional note with the first posthumous acting award since Heath Ledger?
The Rationale: Who wouldn't want to stay up an extra 20 minutes to see that kind of history made?
The Problem: Well, some could call the Oscars crass for hoping to increase viewership by leaving the posthumous award last. And, oh yeah — Boseman didn't win. Instead, that honor went to The Father's Anthony Hopkins, who didn't even show up to the event. And, instead, Joaquin Phoenix just gets to accept another award, so, really, no one wins.
The Choice: Don't Bother Looking At The Results
Apparently, it's not just the audience that's in the dark about the Oscar winners.
The Rationale: I guess even the producers like a surprise every now and then?
The Problem: [Gestures broadly]
I guess there's one piece of silver lining:
The 2021 Oscars are like, "2017 Oscars, hold my beer."
And that's all, folks!