History was made at this year’s Academy Awards, thanks to historic wins for Asian actors Michelle Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan, along with costume designer Ruth E. Carter becoming the first Black woman to win two Oscars and best original song winner “Naatu Naatu” marking the first victory in the category for an Indian film. As expected, “Everything Everywhere All at Once” dominated with five wins, with “All Quiet on the Western Front” right behind it with four.
In the meantime, acclaimed best picture nominees including “Elvis,” “The Fabelmans,” “Banshees of Inisherin” and “Tar” went home empty-handed despite 30 nominations between them. Here, Variety breaks down the biggest snubs and surprises of the 95th Annual Academy Awards.
SNUB: Angela Bassett, Best Supporting Actress, “Wakanda Forever”
All season, the supporting actress category has been a bit of a question mark. While Bassett seemed the early frontrunner with wins from Golden Globes and Critics’ Choice Awards, neither of those voting bodies overlap with the Oscars. So when Kerry Condon won BAFTA and Jamie Lee Curtis took home the SAG Award, the category started to look fairly open. And no one could deny Bassett’s powerful performance in a movie everyone saw – or how impactful her speeches have been. Bassett still won kudos however, getting a sweet shoutout from presenters Michael B. Jordan and Jonathan Majors. “Hey, Auntie,” Jordan – who played her nephew in the first “Black Panther” said as Majors added, “We love you.”
SNUB: Catherine Martin and “Elvis”
“Elvis” went into the night with an impressive eight nominations, including three for Martin in picture, production design and costume design. It looked like Austin Butler might take home lead actor after his BAFTA win for “Elvis,” but SAG Award winner Brendan Fraser ultimately triumphed in that category for his comeback vehicle “The Whale.”
SURPRISE: Ruth E. Carter, Best Costume Design, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”
It’s hard to call it a shocker when someone as iconic as Carter takes home a prize, but a slight edge was given to Catherine Martin after she won the BAFTA. They competed in different categories at the Costume Designers Guild Award, where “Elvis” won for period film while “Wakanda Forever” lost out to “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” – seeming to give Martin even more of an edge. But in the end, Carter not only triumphed on Oscar night, she became the first Black woman in history to win two Academy Awards.
SNUB: Mandy Walker, Best Cinematography, “Elvis”
History was made one week ago when Walker became the first female director of photography to take home the top prize at the American Society of Cinematographers Award in the feature film category – and it looked like she might repeat the win at the Oscars, becoming the first woman in the 95-year history of the Academy Awards. But ultimately the prize was taken by James Friend for his stunning work in “All Quiet on the Western Front.”
SURPRISE: Volker Bertelmann, Best Original Score, “All Quiet on the Western Front”
Most pundits were predicting this category came down to two previous winners – Justin Hurwitz for his acclaimed “Babylon” score and five-time Oscar winner/legend John Williams. But it was German composer Bertelmann, previously nominated in this category for “Lion,” who took home his first Academy Award.
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