Essays · Movies · TV

A Ton of Americans Can’t Name One Best Picture Nominee. How Many Do You Know?

By  · Published on February 23rd, 2017

Plus: the passing of Seijun Suzuki, MST3K returns, and the FSR story roundup.

We know this doesn’t pertain to you guys, but thought we’d share it anyway for a laugh, or to shake your head at disappointedly. In a recent survey undertaken by National Research Group at the behest of The Hollywood Reporter, Americans were polled and asked to name one nominee up for this year’s Best Picture Academy Award. Just one. Out of nine.

60% of those polled failed to answer the question.

This could be especially painful for the Academy since the entire reason they bumped the total number of nominees up from five to a possible 10 was to generate more interest in the broadcast by including a broader range of films. Fortunately, though, it turns out ignorance isn’t a deterring factor when it comes to tuning in: 70% of the polled said they would watch the show regardless.

Of the 40% who could come up with a title, 32% of them came up with La La Land. Big shocker there. On the other end of things, Hell or High Water was the least-named of the nominees; only five percent of people could come up with it.

Is this a commentary on the evolving way in which people watch their movies? Is it a rejection of the studio system by the public at large? Sure, maybe, but it’s also just that remembering stuff in the 21st century is kinda pointless, that’s what we have the internet for.

But out of curiosity, quiz yourself: I mentioned two nominees in this post. How many of the other seven can you name before turning to Google?

(hint: the pic above should help)

The Oscars air this Sunday evening on ABC.

In other news and points of interest…

Japanese auteur Seijun Suzuki has passed away at the age of 93. His films Branded to Kill and Tokyo Drifter have influenced everyone from Martin Scorsese to Quentin Tarantino. The Hollywood Reporter has the details…

…Sci-fi comedy fans rejoice! The Netflix revival of beloved cult series Mystery Science Theater 3000 now has a release date. The streaming service also gave us our first look at the complete cast, which includes geek-icons Felicia Day (The Guild) and Patton Oswalt…

…the Chewbacca torch has officially been passed from Peter Mayhew to Joonas Suotano. Read the new guy’s letter to his predecessor and franchise fans…

Over in our corner of the internet, FSR had some great articles go up today, including what Rob Hunter learned from Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight commentary, Zosha Millman’s exploration of Damien Chazelle’s use of color in La La Land, The Bitter Script Reader’s brutally-honest Razzie ballot, Brad Gullickson’s take on Ken Burns’ Unbearable Blackness, Jake Orthwein’s study of Martin Scorsese’s move to Netflix, and our compilation of The Perfect Shots of Oscars 2017.

And in case you missed them, here are five of the most popular shots we tweeted today. For more of the good stuff, you know where to find us.

BEFORE SUNRISE (1995) Director of Photography: Lee Daniel | Director: Richard Linklater
THE MASTER (2012) Director of Photography: Mihai Malaimare Jr. | Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN (1974) Director of Photography: Gerald Hirschfeld | Director: Mel Brooks
PRISONERS (2013) Director of Photography: Roger Deakins | Director: Denis Villeneuve

Related Topics:

Novelist, Screenwriter, Video Essayist