Well, they had to do something. Year-in, year-out, decade after decade, the Academy Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have dropped the ball when it comes to Best Picture nomination selections. On average, I'd say roughly three of the five selected each year have been worthy and that's being generous. It's no wonder ratings haven't seen Titanic rises in eons. In recent years, Oscar snubs have made more news than the nominations themselves. That's why I'm a bit excited -- albeit the purist in me is torn (I don't like Interleague baseball either), that the Academy announced today that the 82nd Annual Oscar telecast will feature 10 feature films in the top category. Somewhere Batman -- not to mention WALL-E -- are smiling. No doubt they had something to do with this.
The Oscars way back in the day used to have 10 nominees (sometimes eight) in the Best Picture race but haven't since Casablanca won in 1943. Logic without reason I guess. One can only wonder what films that got the shaft every year, every decade since then would've been given their due. You know maybe they should start awarding Honorary Best Film Oscars like they do for actor's they've slighted throughout the years now. Wes Anderson get ready to pick up your Tenenbaums Oscar if that ever happens.
I only mention that film because it's a classic as far as I'm concerned. As a matter of fact, most film classics weren't nominated for Best Picture so that's why, again, I'm excited to see some Oscar changes. Ever since Obama rocked onto the scene, change has been everywhere. Everything's about change, and the term and word "change" are being beaten over everybody's head. Change isn't a bad thing, but change for the sake of change is. This isn't.
One can only hope Oscar voters change their voting ways now. For far too long comedies and box office blockbusters (and fantasy movies not frolicking with hobbits) have got little to no respect. Tell me 2007's best film wasn't Bourne Ultimatum, and I might believe you. Yep, it's time for the Oscars to take a hint from The Golden Globes and loosen up. Up is a shoo-in this year for Best Animated Flick, let's hope now it can be where it belongs -- in the Best Picture category as well. There's so much potential here... potential for small indies to get recognized and flourish at the box office; a chance for comedies to disprove that the Academy is made up solely of rich, uptight white people, and last but not least and arguably most importantly, it may very well entice studios to make more quality films and less Year Ones and Paul Blarts. Pray.
Follow Jon Chattman on Twitter: www.twitter.com/asidesmusic