8/31/2017

Big Oscars Push Planned For 'War For The Planet Of The Apes'


It used to be that blockbuster movies weren't like Kryptonite to Academy voters, but in recent years they tend to be forgotten as just popcorn entertainment. That may be changing this year, because Wonder Woman won't be the only tentpole film getting a big push for the Oscars. 20th Century Fox is also planning a major campaign for Matt Reeves' incredible and criminally underseen War for the Planet of the Apes.

Part of that will be to finally get Andy Serkis some much-deserved recognition for his CGI performance as Caesar, which has earned him acclaim across the board but nary a Best Actor vote from the Academy. For him they'll push for some kind of special recognition for his amazing motion-capture work. They've tried going the other route in the past but were always met with shaky support at best. This year they'll re-double their efforts in hopes of gaining a critic group (like WAFCA or the BFCA) nomination or award, with a SAG win also on their radar.

Fox is targeting a Best Picture nomination as well as Best Director and Screenplayfor Reeves. They'll also seek to dominate the crafts categories (visual effects, production design, cinematography, makeup, etc.) in order to build credibility within the Academy for the Best Picture nom. With such a large influx of new voters now may be the perfect time.

I can actually see this working better for 'War' than I can for Wonder Woman, although it's probably a long shot for both. 'War' has phenomenal critical support and isn't burdened by the comic book movie stigma, but the hurdle may be its lukewarm box office which sits at $359M worldwide. Only $142M of that came from the U.S. If any blockbuster movie deserves some Oscars love it's this one. Reeves has a knack for making tentpole movies that feel like prestige dramas, so maybe the Academy will recognize his achievement. [Deadline]