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Oscar-Nominated Scary Motion pictures | Wealth of Geeks

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Oscar-Nominated Scary Motion pictures | Wealth of Geeks

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The Academy Awards have a shaky relationship with horror. Usually ignored by the annual ceremony, the style has primarily develop into the “stunning robes” of the awards, with its few recognitions coming largely for technical classes like sound and soundtrack, artwork path, costume, make-up, and particularly results. 

Nonetheless, horror movies hardly ever get positioned into performing, directing, or the Finest Image classes. From the academy’s perspective, these awards maintain the substance over the fashion, turning into probably the most prestigious, memorable, and celebrated wins. Trade darlings like Bette Davis and Audrey Hepburn have navigated previous the style with performing nominations for No matter Occurred to Child Jane? and Wait Till Darkish, respectively, although even these with out wins. Few and much between describe the variety of honors given to style films in these highest classes. For the exceptions, take a look at these Oscar-nominated scary films.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)

Fredric March in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)
Picture Credit score: Paramount Footage.

Although thought of classics by immediately’s requirements, the outdated black-and-white monster films that paved the way in which for the horror style didn’t acquire the identical reward throughout their preliminary releases as they do now. The Bride of Frankenstein, arguably the most effective of the Common Monster films and director James Whales’ masterpiece, scored just one Oscar nomination for sound, leaving the remainder of the franchise largely unnoticed. A number of years earlier, Paramount Footage’ Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde earned three complete nominations, together with these for writing and cinematography. The class through which the movie received, Finest Actor, nonetheless got here with a caveat. Even with an impressive efficiency from Fredric March within the twin title function, the win didn’t stand alone, leading to a uncommon tie with Wallace Beery’s lead efficiency in The Champ.

Psycho (1960)

Psycho Janet Leigh
Picture Credit score: MPTV.

Properly into the ‘60s, practically thirty years later, the academy nonetheless hadn’t acknowledged a lot throughout the style. Equally to the earlier monster movies, beloved director Alfred Hitchcock didn’t attain adoration for the ingenious and pioneering efforts that many see in his work immediately. His magnum opus, Psycho, did rack up 4 nominations for artwork path and cinematography, one for supporting actress Janet Leigh, and one other for Hitchcock himself as director. Leigh’s nomination in a supporting function got here with explicit curiosity for the reason that movie spends a lot of the time following her character, however Anthony Perkin’s Norman Bates acquired no consideration, and the movie didn’t win in any of its classes. Three years later, The Birds would obtain solely a Visible Results nomination for animator Ub Iwerks. Hitchcock would additionally by no means win the Finest Director award.

Rosemary’s Child (1968)

Mia Farrow in Rosemary's Baby (1968)
Picture Credit score: Paramount Footage.

In 1965, Hush…Hush, Candy Charlotte broke the Oscar information with seven nominations, probably the most for a horror film so far, together with one for supporting actress Agnes Moorehead, however, but once more, it will not win any awards. Not till Rosemary’s Child, a couple of years later, would a horror film win once more in certainly one of these prestigious classes. Whereas Mia Farrow made headlines for the movie together with her new haircut, and the movie itself acquired a nomination for its screenplay, Farrow remained totally ignored on the ceremony for her transformative and charming lead function. Her costar, Ruth Gordon, whose efficiency as Rosemary’s nosey neighbor Minnie Castevet straddles the movie’s darkness with an genuine but unsettling lightness to floor it, as an alternative received within the Finest Supporting Actress class.

The Exorcist (1973)

The Exorcist Jason Miller
Picture Credit score: Warner Bros.

The Exorcist shocked viewers members of the ‘70s, ultimately possessing the academy into recognizing it with ten nominations, extraordinary for a horror film. This recreation changer included each Ellen Burstyn and Linda Blair receiving nominations for Finest Actress and Finest Supporting Actress, respectively. The 2 give intensely totally different performances that raised the bar for horror actors on the time and have develop into trade highlights. The movie additionally scored nominations for Jason Miller’s supporting function, modifying, artwork path, cinematography, William Friedkin’s very good path, and Finest Image. Regardless of all the consideration, The Exorcist solely received two of its ten classes for screenplay and sound. In the present day, it nonetheless qualifies as one of many definitive Oscar-nominated scary films.

Jaws (1975)

Jaws
Picture Credit score: Common Footage.

One among Steven Spielberg’s few forays into horror, Jaws swam into the Oscars to take dwelling three horror wins. John Williams’s iconic rating and the movie’s modifying and sound led the way in which, with no nominations given to the actors or director regardless of the movie’s reliance on situational character-building to work. The movie did enter the Finest Image race however misplaced to One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. In Academy Awards ceremonies of later years, the stay orchestra would adapt the successful Jaws theme as a scare tactic for award winners who take too lengthy with their acceptance speeches, ushering them off the stage and additional cementing the horror movie into the ceremony’s personal historical past.

Carrie (1976)

Carrie Sissy Spacek
Picture Credit score: United Artists.

The performances of Piper Laurie and Sissy Spacek totally carry the movie adaptation of Stephen King’s novel, inflicting no shock after they each acquired nominations for his or her roles as Margaret White and her daughter Carrie. Their chemistry collectively creates a lot of the movie’s memorable scenes exterior of the notorious promenade sequence, displaying the heavy complexity of their relationship. Although not sufficient to win, Carrie’s recognition primarily based solely on their performing marks considerably of a notable shift for horror on the awards ceremony. They misplaced to the supporting and lead actress performances of Beatrice Straight and Faye Dunaway in Community.

Aliens (1986)

Aliens (1986)
Picture Credit score: twentieth Century Fox.

The academy acknowledged 1978’s Alien with artwork and results nominations, however not till its sequel practically ten years later would Sigourney Weaver’s portrayal of Ellen Ripley obtain consideration, together with nominations for results, sound, artwork path, modifying, and music classes. Aliens solely took dwelling awards for results and sound modifying. Nonetheless, the popularity of Weaver’s Ripley, one of the spectacular feminine characters within the historical past of sci-fi and horror, comes as a big acknowledgment. Even in a much less dramatic, massive monster film, the academy confirmed it might probably admire and take such a personality severely. Although, no recognition went to Jeff Goldblum’s uncanny efficiency in The Fly of the identical yr.

Distress (1990)

Misery Kathy Bates James Caan
Picture Credit score Citadel Rock Leisure Nelson Leisure

By the late ‘80s, the development of heroic girls like Weaver’s Ripley in Aliens gave approach to harmful girls like Glenn Shut’s Alex in Deadly Attraction. Whereas that film acquired six nominations, together with one for Shut’s outrageous and antagonistic lead efficiency, it made no wins. As a substitute, one other Stephen King novel adaptation would take the cake for harmful girls a couple of years later. Kathy Bates grew to become a family title together with her powerhouse efficiency as Annie Wilkes in Distress, carrying your complete film to its one nomination and much-deserved win. Probably the most straight character-driven movies nominated from the horror style, it’s no marvel that Bates received the award and certain loosened up the academy’s voting members for the next yr’s main horror win.

The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

The Silence of the Lambs
Picture Credit score: Orion Footage.

Each Cape Worry and The Silence of the Lambs acquired performing nominations in 1992. Whereas neither of Cape Worry’s nominated actors, Robert De Niro or Juliette Lewis, received, The Silence of the Lambs celebrated a complete of 5 wins in its seven nominated classes. Not solely did each Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins win for his or her excellent lead performances, however the movie additionally received for Ted Tally’s screenplay, Jonathan Demm’s path, and Finest Image general. The Silence of the Lambs made historical past as solely the third movie of any style to win all the ceremony’s prime 5 status classes and the primary horror movie ever to win Finest Image. In 64 years of the Academy Awards, Oscar-nominated scary films lastly reached the highest.

The Sixth Sense (1999)

The Sixth Sense (1999)
Picture Credit score: Buena Vista Footage Distribution.

Many typically cite Toni Collette’s efficiency in Hereditary, a tour de power of horror and emotional household drama, as one of many greatest Oscars snubs of the style, not even receiving a nomination. Curiously, Collette’s solely Academy Awards nomination got here via one other horror movie, M. Evening Shyamalan’s The Sixth Sense, through which she portrays the mom of Haley Joel Osment’s character, Cole, who sees lifeless individuals. Each actors acquired nominations for his or her supporting roles, with Bruce Willis’ lead ignored. The movie additionally earned nominations for modifying, unique screenplay, Finest Director for Shyamalan, and Finest Image, however didn’t win something.

Black Swan (2010)

Black Swan Natalie Portman
Picture Credit score: Fox Searchlight Footage.

After The Silence of the Lambs, the ‘90s and 2000s introduced a lull for even the small illustration horror would typically have within the greater classes on the Oscars. Willem Dafoe’s efficiency in Shadow of the Vampire and the questionable musical lead of Johnny Depp in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Avenue carried the style in performing classes. Fortunately, Darren Aronofsky’s surreal psychological thriller Black Swan ushered the style again in with fashion with nominations for cinematography, modifying, Aronofsky’s path, and even Finest Image. The movie’s one win went to Natalie Portman in her lead as ballerine Nina, in search of an ideal efficiency. The movie didn’t attain perfection with its wins, however horror returned favorably to the minds of the academy voters as soon as once more.

Get Out (2017)

Get Out
Picture Credit score: Common Footage.

Only a yr after Moonlight grew to become the primary Black movie to take dwelling the Finest Image award, Jordan Peele’s Get Out tried to maintain the custom going with a nomination within the class. The movie examines the Black expertise in America via a horror lens. Different nominations for Get Out included Finest Actor for Daniel Kaluuya and directing and screenplay nods for Peele. Peele’s intelligent script, which manages to talk on to its Black viewers with out isolating non-Black viewers members from having fun with and understanding the movie, particularly stood out as the one winner for the movie. Nonetheless, the popularity in all status classes stunned many for a movie with so many conventional hurdles to move, and solely one other horror film directed by one other particular person of coloration would overtake it that yr.

The Form of Water (2017)

The Shape of Water Doug Jones
Picture Credit score: Fox Searchlight Footage.

As a genre-bending movie that pays tribute to traditional cinema, it’s no marvel that The Form of Water finally received over the academy, however there’s no hiding its horror roots. Guillermo del Toro’s up to date cross between The Creature from the Black Lagoon and Magnificence and the Beast scored 13 nominations in complete, rather a lot for a monster film. Sally Hawkins, Richard Jenkins, and Octavia Spencer all acquired performing nominations. The movie additionally earned nominations for modifying, sound classes, costume design, cinematography, and screenplay. Though not successful any of these nominations, wins did come for manufacturing design, rating, and del Toro’s path. The movie additionally beat Get Out for Finest Image, making it the primary horror-centric movie since The Silence of the Lambs to win the class.

Parasite (2019)

Parasite Song Kang-ho, Jang Hye-jin, Choi Woo-sik, Park So-dam
Picture Credit score: CJ Leisure.

Although some could argue Parasite performs extra as a thriller than a horror, director Bong Joon-Ho’s intricate movie threatens in a different way, exposing the underbelly of classism in horrifying ways in which linger lengthy after viewing. Critics fell head over heels for the South Korean genre-bending film, positioning it early within the award season to take the Oscar for Finest Worldwide Movie and leaving no shock when it did. Parasite additionally garnered nominations for manufacturing design and modifying, however the movie’s sweep of wins for its screenplay, path, and recognition as the primary international language movie to ever win the Finest Image award cemented it as one thing particular, all on the heels of dramatic horror.


William O. Tyler is a comic book creator and leisure critic whose views have been shared in and at numerous retailers, together with Fangoria, Wealth of Geeks, San Diego Comedian-Con, NewFest, and his personal comedian Cinephilia.


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