The 2018 Oscar nominations were announced Tuesday morning, and while there were many snubs, one that felt like a dagger through the heart was Michael Stuhlbarg.
Stuhlbarg received nary a nomination this year, most notably in the Best Supporting Actor category, where he seemed like an obvious choice.
You’ve almost certainly seen Stuhlbarg in something, even if you don’t realize it. He had roles in three Best Picture nominees this year ― an achievement so rare that Vulture has named it “Stuhlbarging” (though John C. Reilly, and a few other performers, have done it too).
In just the past year, Stuhlbarg played New York Times executive editor Abe Rosenthal in “The Post,” the duplicitous spy/scientist Dr. Robert Hoffstetler at a top-secret government lab in “The Shape of Water,” and the impassioned, warm-hearted professor giving his family glorious summers in Italy in “Call Me By Your Name.”
His performance in “Call Me By Your Name” left many weeping ― particularly in one of the film’s final scenes, where he delivers a gorgeously sage speech to his heartsick son, played by Timothee Chalamet.
But despite his incredible cinematic achievement this year, Stuhlbarg went unnoticed by the Academy.
In fact, Stuhlbarg has now been in seven films nominated for Best Picture, with his leading role in Joel and Ethan Coen’s “A Serious Man,” appearances in Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” and Martin Scorsese’s “Hugo,” and a turn in last year’s alien flick “Arrival” ― all without a single Oscar nomination for himself.
To add insult to injury, Stuhlbarg was cast in 2016’s “Doctor Strange,” much to the excitement of cinephiles ― but then he barely had any screen time, raising the question of why Marvel chose an actor of his caliber for what was essentially a bit part.
Stuhlbarg’s exclusion from this year’s Oscars wasn’t just noticed by us. Fans on Twitter were upset as well:
Stuhlbarg was to have a significant part in “Gore” ― a biopic about author Gore Vidal, starring Kevin Spacey in the title role and Stuhlbarg as Howard Austen, Vidal’s longtime partner ― but that movie has been scrapped following allegations against Spacey of sexual harassment and assault.
But there’s always “The Looming Tower” ― Hulu’s upcoming 10-part series based on Lawrence Wright’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book ― where Stuhlbarg will play former counterterrorism official Richard Clarke.
At some point, we suspect, he will finally manage to Stuhl-barge his way into a nomination himself.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this article said that Stuhlbarg has appeared in five movies nominated for Best Picture. In fact, he has appeared in seven.