Anonymous Oscar vote: The publicist still hasn’t seen Wakanda in forever

Some Oscar contenders were left scratching their heads. – I’m going to watch Everything Everywhere All at Once again.

After Academy Awards voting closes on March 7, we’re continuing our sixth annual series of interviews with voters from across the Academy’s various branches for their unfiltered take on what was chosen, overlooked and overrated in the 2023 awards season. The interview has been edited for brevity. Here we have a publicist who hasn’t seen ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’ but can vote for Angela Bassett, slams Cate Blanchett for being unlikable as Lydia Tar, and thinks Brendan Fraser was ‘too fat’ in ‘The Whale”.

the best picture

I have seen the important films and all 10 nominees. The Best Picture category has been expanded: I would put no more than three, and even less 10. Standards have been reduced to a minimum due to the number required. One of the movies I loved was ‘The Good Nurse’ which was superbly made and brilliantly acted by Eddie Redmayne and Jessica Chastain. He soaked it in from head to toe. It gripped me like Hitchcock from the start. He deserved the nominations. Should have been in the top 10. The first three that have major flaws are “Avatar: The Way of Water,” “The Fabelmans,” and “The Triangle of Sadness.”

I just saw it “Avatar: The Path of Water” yesterday in IMAX 3D. It was absorbed right from the start, which most films don’t. Some of the plot points were cliche, but that didn’t bother me. This goes beyond a big spectacular sci-fi movie: putting it in this category minimizes it. (James Cameron) introduced this world and put forth a political message that has many implications for today, especially with the whole issue of animal rights and protection and the destruction of water and the environment. It created a whole new world: amazing performance. I’m surprised it didn’t get a Best Director nomination. I chose this as the best picture.

“The Fablemen” I really liked it, along with “Avatar”. It is beautifully produced and written and covers a lot of ground. He captured time and people beautifully. There was a lot of variation in what was going on. Not a silent film, it was stable. It took you to a world, you believed, nothing crossed your mind.

“The Triangle of Sadness.” Interesting and imaginative, piqued my interest. Every character was exceptional. I especially liked Dolly De Leon and her transformation from toilet cleaner to captain. I had arguments with people about the ending. I kept wondering why they hadn’t explored the other side of the island.

I look forward to “Everything everywhere at once” once again before voting. I thought it was chaos, I couldn’t follow it and the weather is always changing. I’ll give it another chance because everyone is talking about it. I saw a bit of it again on the plane: All the scenes with Jamie Lee Curtis. I thought he was hilarious and he blew up on the plane.

“Quiet on the Western Front” beautifully made. I remember the first one well. This was much better than Mendes’ 1917 film. I kept coming back to “Paths of Glory”. The area has been covered before. The craftsmen were great.

“Top Gun: Maverick” it was the same old plan and a “gunfight at the OK corral” ended, except in the sky. It’s done really well and it’s been good for the Academy, it’s a popular movie that people can root for. I can see where it is because of its popularity. It is a genre that is not recognized. I appreciate the workmanship.

“The Banshees of Inisherin.” I liked the first two thirds. He maintained himself beautifully. People on the opposite island were committing suicide; life has not changed much from Inisherin’s pagan aspects. Then he fell apart with the amputation of the ankles and ended up dumb.

“Elvis” it was fine, i wasn’t wild about it. I’m tired of Tom Hanks’ character and Elvis rebelling and coming back to it.

“Tar”: The whole thing about Lydia Tar being a lesbian was said at the beginning. In the last third of the movie, he’s accused by a girl he never sees, who he’s attracted to another girl, to go into that seedy place with graffiti and there was nothing there. It was a miss for me.

“Women Speak” it was the only movie i couldn’t watch. He was so static that he never left the barn. I got bored after half an hour. He didn’t move, it was like a play. Topics we are all familiar with have been covered endlessly. Not my favourite. The actors were fantastic, I can’t take anything away from them. This is what they said, the problems they raised. It was torture for me.


I will probably vote for him Steven Spielberg, or maybe Ruben Östlund, who did the “Triangle of Sadness”. To hold that together, from three different parts, and to be immersed and wondering what was going to happen – that was quite amazing.

“The Fabelmans” I don’t want to say it’s pure filmmaking. It held its own the best, it was consistent. I didn’t know it was Spielberg. There were a lot of Spielberg movies I didn’t like. It was a return to smaller film production, with a lot of heart. Well done. In high school, everything is done nicely.

To Leslie

“To Leslie”

Courtesy of the Everett Collection

leading actress

I saw it for “Leslie,” I thought Andrea Riseborough it was excellent. I don’t know if that was one of the best performances by any actress that anyone has ever quoted from Gwyneth Paltrow. Riseborough was very good. People have always talked about her as a great actress. I’m glad to be nominated. I’m not against it, it’s good that there are other ways than the usual way where studios spend millions. Here was a grassroots campaign.

Ana de Armas she was undoubtedly excellent as Marilyn Monroe (in “Blonde”), but I had problems with the film.

Cate Blanchett always good, but most of the movie was unpleasant. I didn’t understand what everyone was freaking out about. I thought he was fascinating, but he was by no means likable. It was beautifully filmed, but I couldn’t really relate to it for the duration of the film. He already has two Oscars, so that’s enough.

Michelle Williams It was very good. However, Spielberg’s mother seemed a more bizarre character: I saw her in interviews. That threw me a little.

I’m going to watch Everything Everywhere All at Once again.

THE BALL by Brendan Fraser, 2022. © A24 /Courtesy of the Everett Collection

“The Whale”

Courtesy of the Everett Collection

Leading actor

Probably Brendan Fraser (in “The Whale”). It was good, moving and convincing, and he had to overcome a difficult physical path. He was too fat (in “The Whale”), I don’t know how anyone can move like that. But he won me over and I believed him. I liked that he came back to play something you never expected him to do. He was good as a heroic leading man, as good a guy as anyone, but somehow he never got that much attention.

Bill Nighy he was fantastic (in “Living”) Colin Farrell he was a regular in this role (in “Banshees”), but after a while it became repetitive. Austin Butler as “Elvis”: I’m biased, I thought Jonathan Rhys-Meyers was the best Elvis in the TV version. This performance was very strong in my mind.

“Aftersun” was very obscure. I didn’t know what was going on. I didn’t think the little girl was that attractive. I didn’t know what (Pál Mescalcharacter) had a problem. There was another level that I didn’t appreciate, I like experimental stuff but none of that appealed to me.

Supporting actress

I haven’t seen ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’. I don’t know why I passed him. I always loved it Angela Bassett so I would be inclined to vote for him. Everything else was good. Hong Chau (“The Whale”) was good. In “Everything Everywhere”. Jamie Lee Curtis it only has three scenes, but it’s fun, fantastic. It has never been nominated, another thing I would consider.

THE INISHERIN BANSHEES, from left: Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, 2022. © Searchlight Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

“The Banshees of Inisherin”

©Searchlight Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

Supporting actor

Maybe Brendan Gleeson, even though there was the whole thing about the knuckles. But he was the most diverse. He pulled it off on every level. Barry Keoghan I love everything, but his role was not that big. Gleeson should be in Best Actor; it’s a two-hander. The whole problem with only five (actor) nominations is that they’re supporting too many great performances to win an Oscar, it’s terrible.

Judd Hirsch He was also great in his scenes (“Fabelmans”).

FABELMANS, Gabriel LaBelle, 2022. ph: Merie Weismiller Wallace / © Universal Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

“The Fablemen”

©Universal/Courtesy Everett Collection

Adapted screenplay

It’s in between “Live” and “Everything is quiet.” “Live” was good to watch. I don’t know what will become of it. “All Quiet” is beautiful, but finished; I’ve seen it all before.

Original screenplay

Any one “The Fablemen” obsession “The Triangle of Sadness.” “The Fabelmans” is constant throughout; it’s beautifully done, feels good, captured the era beautifully without any false notes. The “triangle” is unusual, unexpected and imaginative, and it wants to give it as originality as possible.


Probably “All Quiet” I love it though “Empire of Light” many, even if it had three endings. I watched – Bardo. What the hell was there? I’m angry at people who need the title and subtitle to be more vague than the title (“The False Chronicle of a Handful of Truth”).

ELVIS, Austin Butler as Elvis Presley, 2022. © Warner Bros. / Courtesy Everett Collection


©Warner Bros/Courtesy Everett Collection

Costume design

I will vote for “Elvis.” I have not seen “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.” We just watched “Ma’am. Harris is going to Paris.” The only reason it got made was ‘Phantom Thread’ and it wasn’t on the same level as Paul’s (Thomas Anderson) movie.


“Banshees” because the first three quarters went well. I didn’t like the plot and how it played out. It became too violent. It’s incredible with the knuckles. But he maintained this tone throughout.

Makeup and hair

give it to me “All Quiet” it looked perfect in every way. I have not seen”The Batman” obsession “Black Panther,” I liked the first one though.

Production planning

I’ll go with him “Avatar: The Path of Water.”


I hated it “Babylon.” Give it to John Williams, just because it was beautifully done, understated and moving “The Fablemen” along. It was like dressing up for the movie.


I saw RRR. I give it to you “Naatu Naatu” so much energy. It would be nice if a non-English song won.


“Avatar: The Path of Water”


“Avatar: The Path of Water”

"Navalny" doc



I will vote for “Navalny” politically and well done. I don’t like Nan Goldin’s photos that much, but she was diligent about getting the Sackler family. Everyone raved about it (“All beauty and bloodshed”). I couldn’t be more excited.

International feature film

“Closure,” A Belgian film by Lukas Dhont. I didn’t know what to expect. It was a surprise, beautifully made, touching and unnerving. I knew something terrible was going to happen. You sympathized with the child who felt responsible for all the dilemmas and conflicts of being a teenager. “All Quiet” and “Argentina 1985” were also good.

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