Tuesday, February 2, 2010

‘District 9’ best picture nomination shows the value of the expanded Oscar ballot

The decision by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to expand the number of Oscar nominees for best picture from five to 10 has successfully opened up the category to a broader range of movies.
The best example is the nomination of science-fiction drama “District 9.” Few expected it to get a best picture nod, especially with another sci-fi movie, “Avatar,” considered a shoe-in.
Usually science fiction, fantasy and horror movies are treated like second-class citizens compared with the usual Oscar-bait dramas. Last year’s snubbing of “The Dark Knight” is a case in point.
The expanded slate also allowed an animated movie, “Up,” to get recognized.
Of the 10 best picture nominees, four are already on home video, including frontrunner “The Hurt Locker,” according to Home Media Magazine. Other nominees on DVD and Blu-ray Disc are “Inglourious Basterds,” “Up” and “District 9.”
Three more have been scheduled for release on home video: “A Serious Man” (Feb. 9), “Precious” (March 9) and “The Blind Side” (March 23).
The other three nominees – “Avatar,” “An Education” and “Up in the Air,” are still in theaters, with no home video release scheduled.
The winners will be announced on Sunday March 7.

Related links:

Official list of nominees from Oscars.org.
The Academy Awards homepage.

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