Everything You Need to Know Before the 2019 Oscars

It’s officially awards season y’all! And the mother of all awards shows is happening this Sunday (the Oscars, duh). So if you plan on tuning in but have no idea what the sitch is, we’re here to help! Here’s a list of all the nominees for this year


1. This is the first time in 30 years that the Oscars don’t have a host.

I’m sure you’ve seen this news everywhere, but it’s a pretty big deal so I think it’s worth repeating. Kevin Hart was announced to host the awards show in December, but he stepped down after being called out for homophobic tweets from a few years ago. There was a month long question that practically everyone was asking: who the heck is gonna host the Oscars this year? Turns out it’s no one! Instead of having one host the Academy has stars announcing as per usual, and will likely assign different people with ‘host duties’. Although this has become a bit of a controversy, it will be very interesting to see how the show goes without someone hosting, and we have hope that all will go well!


2. Major awards would have been given during commercial breaks.

Last week the Academy announced that in order to shorten the broadcast, four major award categories would be given during commercial breaks. They included cinematography, film editing, live action short film, and hair and makeup styling. Following this announcement, there was a wave of outrage on social media. People like Alfonso Cuaron, Guillermo Del Toro, and many more took to Twitter to argue the importance of these categories whose awards deserve to be shown on air. The Academy has since reversed this decision, and all four categories will be given on air.


3. Netflix could have a big win on its hands.

I’m sure that we’ve all heard of Netflix, you know, that super small company that we totally aren’t all addicted to. This is the first year that one of their original films has been nominated for an Oscar, or any major award for that matter. Alfonso Cuaron's Roma premiered on the platform a few months ago, and has gained 10 nominations including Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay. Roma took home Best Director and Best Foreign Film at the Golden Globes earlier this year, and may win big at the Oscars, which would be a first for Netflix which has gained a great deal of respect in terms of original content over the last few years.


Author’s note: If you haven’t seen Roma, you need to! It’s an absolutely beautiful film (one of my favorites in a long time) and is literally FREE so you have no excuse.


4. There are some big-time veterans who are first-time nominees



Despite both of their accomplished work and contributions to the film industry, writers and directors Spike Lee and Paul Schrader both received their first nominations this year. Lee is nominated this year for Best Picture, Director, and Adapted Screenplay for BlackKklansman, after famously being shut out of the 1990 Best Picture race with Do the Right Thing. Lee has previously stated that his past snubs have taught him not to expect much from the Oscars, but with three nominations, this could be the year! Another veteran, Paul Schrader, is also a first-time nominee. He is nominated for Best Original Screenplay for First Reformed. While the film was praised holistically, its only Academy nomination went to Schrader, and deservedly so. Schrader wrote the screenplays for the Martin Scorsese classics Taxi Driver and Raging Bull, yet this is his first nomination at the age of 72.  


5. There’s the First Marvel Movie at the Oscars



This year, Black Panther became the first superhero movie to be nominated for an Academy Award. In fact, it was nominated for seven, including Best Picture and Best Original Song. The nominations mark a potential shift in the Academy’s inclusion of superhero films, especially after the Academy’s decision to abandon their idea of a Popular Film category. And with what seems to be Marvel’s complete takeover of the box office, it seems fitting that a box office and critical darling would make its way to the Oscars.


6. The Gender Disparity in the Academy Class is Changing (Sort Of)


Alongside the #MeToo and TimesUp movements, the 2019 Academy class indeed has more female nominees than it has ever had before: 59 out of the total 212, up from 51 last year. However, categories like Best Director and Best Cinematographer have gone without female nominees this year, despite brilliant work by filmmakers such as Marielle Heller (Can You Ever Forgive Me), Tamara Jenkins (Private Life), and Debra Granik (Leave No Trace). Hopefully, more will be expected of the Academy, particularly concerning larger categories, in the coming years.


7. The Presenter Tradition Lives On!  


Due to the ceremony not having a host this year, it was rumored that the Academy was seeking out “bigger” stars to present the prestigious acting awards, rather than following the tradition of having the previous winners present the honors. Allison Janney, who won Best Actress in a Supporting Role last year for I, Tonya, spoke out publicly, stating that she had not been reached out to with regards to presenting, saying “It breaks my heart.” After the controversy, the Academy made it clear that all four actors will, in fact, present on the big night.


And last but not least, here’s a list of things that we personally believe got totally snubbed by the Academy that you should check out.

  • First Reformed, specifically Ethan Hawke’s performance (available on Amazon Prime)

  • Toni Collette in Hereditary, and the movie as a whole (Amazon Prime)


  • Eighth Grade (Amazon Prime)

  • If Beale Street Could Talk wasn’t nominated for Best Picture

  • The Ballad of Buster Scruggs by the Coen Brothers (Netflix)

  • Timothee Chalamet (bae) not being nominated for Beautiful Boy

  • Won’t You Be My Neighbor wasn’t nominated for Best Documentary

  • Leave No Trace, directed by Debra Granik (Winter’s Bone) was not nominated


Even though a lot of people/movies we love got kind of screwed, all of the controversy surrounding the Oscars this year should make for an interesting show.


Tune in to the 91st Academy Awards on ABC Sunday February 24th at 5pm PST!