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Marvel's Nate Moore addresses Black Panther's Oscar potential

07.20.2018

BLACK PANTHER is a bonafide, crowd-pleasing, instantly classic smash hit, and one that the critics adored too. Everyone seems to love this movie, and by all accounts, it should receive some serious Oscar buzz come the end of the year. Of course, it must overcome all the hurdles that other comic book movies have failed to leap over, and even though some voters may just look at it like a regular superhero flick Nate Moore, Marvel Studios vice president of development and production, feels they created something different that could set it apart from the pack.

Moore was interviewed for a piece for Vanity Fair by Rebecca Keegan recently, the subject of which is that PANTHER might have what it takes to get Oscar voters to look past the genre and embrace something that audiences actually saw – which seems to be a rarity nowadays. Moore said that although they didn’t set out to make this with awards in mind they did know they were making a comic book movie with more depth to it than anything else Marvel has done before.

A lot of our films, I think very rightfully and hopefully successfully, just feel like pieces of pure escapism. This movie attempts to do more. It attempts to make people think about the world that’s around them and celebrate, frankly, a continent, in Africa, that’s often overlooked. I don’t think that at any point in the process did we feel like this could be an awards movie. But we did feel like this could have depth in a way that our movies don’t always do.

Comic book movies have a rather tragic history with the Academy, with movies like THE DARK KNIGHT getting famously shut out for Best Director and Best Picture, causing the Academy to shift to up to 10 nominees. The sadness continued last year’s when the likes of LOGAN and WONDER WOMAN got mostly shut out from the ceremony, although the former did sneak in a surprise, worthy nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay.  However, things could be different this year. The Academy recently brought on almost 1,000 new members (including Moore), making for the most diverse batch of new members in the history of the organization. With new voices come new opportunities for different kinds of movies to get in, possibly the kinds of blockbuster movies that get shunned from major awards.

BLACK PANTHER, in particular, has a strong shot at being the movie the comic book movie that finally cracks Best Picture. It already has so much going for it, including fantastic performances, a great script, and plenty going on in the tech and artistic categories. The costumes from Ruth E. Carter should have no trouble getting a nomination, with the production design by Hannah Beachler being a strong contender. And we can’t forget the original songs from Kendrick Lamar, with “All the Stars” and “Pray for Me” being chart-topping hits.

“Sometimes it feels as if movies based on comics are penalized because of the source material,” Moore said. "Look, the truth is all of us here at Marvel love the Academy Awards, and so all of us, in our heart of hearts, go, ‘Oh, wouldn’t that be so cool if one day that could happen?’ Ultimately the movie’s for the fans, but critics and people who review these films for the Academy are fans, too.”

Source: Vanity Fair

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