‘Wonder Woman’ will be rolled out for a major Oscar campaign this fall


A month ago, critics were lamenting the fact that we were halfway through the year and there were no real Oscar-bait films and no real buzz about any films for potential Oscar campaigns. While we’re trained to expect Oscar-bait films in the last few months of any given year, many films released before October end up winning Oscars, historically speaking. Sometimes it’s not so counterintuitive – the earlier you release a film, the more people get a chance to see it in theaters and the more critics get to talk about why it’s Oscar-worthy. Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk provides that kind of counterprogramming this summer – it’s a serious film, it’s a war film, and it has Oscar-bait written all over it, and it will obviously get a Best Picture nomination (if not a dozen more Oscar nominations). But what about Wonder Woman? According to Variety, the groundbreaking and record-breaking superheroine film is getting a lot of support from Warner Bros for a massive Oscar campaign:

With $781 million in global box office receipts, “Wonder Woman” has already broken records as the highest-grossing movie directed by a woman ever. Now Warner Bros., the studio behind the film, wants the action movie to break another glass ceiling. Although executives haven’t commented publicly on their plans, they have internally discussed launching a formidable awards-season campaign for the movie, in the hopes of making it the first comic-book film nominated for best picture, Variety has learned.

The studio will also stump Patty Jenkins for best director, which would also be groundbreaking. No director of a comic-book film — not even Christopher Nolan — has ever been nominated, and only men have ruled the category since (and before) Kathryn Bigelow won the Oscar for “The Hurt Locker” in 2010. A spokesperson for WB declined to comment.

This won’t be a cheap endeavor, as the road to the Oscars keeps getting costlier. Big dollars are spent on taking out advertising, making watermarked DVDs, setting screenings, and paying for talent to travel to both coasts, to remind voters how hard they suffered for their craft.

The Oscar race took a turn in 2009, after another Warner. Bros. film, “The Dark Knight,” failed to secure a best picture nomination. In 2010, the Academy expanded its best picture category from five to a maximum of 10 movies. But although blockbusters like “Gravity” and “The Martian” have made the cut, a comic book movie has yet to compete in the top race.

That’s because the Academy is still too stodgy to recognize Batman or Deadpool as art. But Warner Bros. executives have been wondering if new membership expansions, which have increased the voting body to include younger members and more diversity, will boost “Wonder Woman’s” chances. (Among the new class of voters is star Gal Gadot, who will presumably support this mission.)

The studio’s efforts will include reintroducing the film this fall, to scarce few who may not have seen it. Insiders report strong reactions to the screening of “Wonder Woman” at the Academy, as it’s been championed by a liberal Hollywood and a reinvigorated wave of feminism in response to Donald Trump. But the movie’s glow could diminish if the mashup tentpole “Justice League,” which comes out in November and co-stars Gadot, gets ripped to shreds by harsh reviews.

With all the focus on “Wonder Woman,” Warner Bros. won’t be neglecting its other summer hit. Sources report to Variety that the studio will also be bringing out the guns for “Dunkirk” and its director Nolan. That means, in a year without a clear frontrunner, Warner Bros. will have two big studio movies trying to crush the competition.

[From Variety]

I forgot that WB is behind Dunkirk too. Good for them! WB is usually the “sad clown noise” of Oscar seasons, but this is smart – Dunkirk is obviously going to get a lot of nominations and WB is obviously going to support it fully during the Oscar season. But it’s smart to include Wonder Woman in there too. While I doubt, realistically, that Patty Jenkins will get a Best Director Oscar nomination, stranger things have happened and it’s absolutely worth having those conversations at Academy screenings and roundtables. I do think that WW should get an Oscar nomination for Best Picture, even if Jenkins is ignored. WW was one of the best films of the year, one of the most satisfying, and one of the most enjoyable: that deserves a Best Picture nomination. I also think there’s a good chance Gal Gadot could end up with some Best Actress nominations, perhaps at the Golden Globes and maybe even SAGs.


Photos courtesy of Warner Bros.

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52 Responses to “‘Wonder Woman’ will be rolled out for a major Oscar campaign this fall”

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  1. Cleo says:

    “Wonder Woman” was good, but it’s not the masterpiece I think some are trying to force it to be. If “The Dark Knight” didn’t get a BP nomination, “WW” probably won’t. It’ll get noms for the technical categories and maybe costuming and set design, but that’s all it really warrants.

    • Ripley says:

      But if I remember correctly, ‘The Dark Knight’ is the reason BP nominees went from five to ten because people (rightfully) felt it should have been include.

      • FLORC says:

        Didn’t that happen to boost viewership? To include more names meant people might tune in or care to see if theirs won. I remember … district 9 (?) Was added with a higher pool of nominees for that reason.

      • Cleo says:

        Very true, but it hasn’t been used for that purpose yet. The expanding of the BP nominees was supposedly meant to allow big budget, mainstream films into the conversation. But it hasn’t exactly panned out like that.

        Christopher Nolan, an auteur that makes mass-appeal movies, has never been nominated in the major categories, which is appalling. The Weinstein movies and the ones like them are still the ones that get recognized. (EDIT: “Inception” was nominated for BP)

        I’d actually be a bit miffed if “WW” is the one that breaks the glass ceiling because, while it’s good and enjoyed it, it wouldn’t be deserving.

  2. Karen says:

    Since they saved so much money from not promoting it on the front end, I guess it won’t cost them extra to promote it on the back end.

  3. IlsaLund says:

    Hmmm…WB should make enough noise so that Wonder Woman is at least a part of the conversation. However, it may not actually garner any awards. I loved the movie and thought it was entertaining but not necessarily Oscar worthy. But hey, what do I know.

    • V4Real says:

      And neither was Lala but how many mods did they get.

      • Karen says:

        Lala was awful, but Hollywood loves a Hollywood movie

      • Marianne says:

        And yet I loved La La Land. I wouldnt have nommed Ryan Gosling personally. He was good but nothing exceptional and he doesnt do much in the film anyway. I think Emma was deserving for “Audition” alone. I would preferred Audition winning over City of Stars. I wouldnt have chosen it for Best Picture, but I think Damien Chazelle was deserving of a nod/win for Best Director, and I think it was worthy of cinematography as well. Visually, I think its a beautiful movie. The Costume nod…..no.

  4. Nicole says:

    Eh it’s not Oscar worthy sorry.

  5. Miles says:

    Not gonna happen. If there is a comic book movie that’s going to garner Oscar buzz come awards season, its going to be Logan. That was lauded as one of the best comic book films of all time by critics when it was released.

    But even then Logan’s best chance is with Patrick Stewart getting a supporting actor nod.

    • Surely Wolfbeak says:

      I was really surprised by how exceptional Logan was. Wonder Woman was a good film, but Logan really transcends the genre, much like Mad Max Fury Road did a couple of years ago.

      • Pam_L says:

        I’m honestly curious about this. How did Mad Max Fury Road transcend the genre?

      • Surely Wolfbeak says:

        Pam L, in terms of post-apocalyptic films, George Miller had already defined the genre with his previous Mad Max films, but with Fury Road he presents it to us in a theatrical scale we have never seen before, and all in one almost continual chase scene. At the same time, he presents us with pathos, redemption, hope, despair, destruction and creation, showing us not just the end of civilization, but what steps in to fill the vacuum (Immortan Joe was pretty prescient considering the 45th president). Anyway, it’s better than Waterworld.

      • detritus says:

        I agree with you Wolfbeak, and Logan was very much out of the typical superhero movie. Stewarts performance was heartbreaking.

        MadMax was also something special in terms of vision and cinematography and strong female roles.

        I think Wonder Woman meant something different. signalling a change in the zeitgeist maybe? It’s impact has more to do with where it sits culturally and socially, what it represents, than the movie itself, although it was very well done.

        The score, artistic direction, script, acting – good verging to great, but none ‘exceptional’.

    • Miss M says:

      I had forgotten about Logan. It was pretty good.

    • Tan says:

      I just watched logan today. And I can say ty movie was exceptional. There was nothing stereotypical comic book movie about it, just oost apocalypticsurvival of sorts.

      And I watchdd WW on big screen. Diana revealing her costume and walking towards the enemy field, it was epic.

      But WW was larger than life, logan was just life.

      Personally I want both movies to have nominations

  6. M says:

    No, Gal doesn’t deserve any nomination, neither the film. She did not give a awards worthy performance.

    • Pam_L says:

      But Chris Pine sure did. His swan song scene at the end alone earned him great praise. I wouldn’t be mad at his peers if he managed to get a Best Supporting Oscar nod for Wonder Woman.

      • diana says:

        The movie was just OK. I know we’re supposed to be full of praise for it but Gal is terrible. She made Chris Pine look like the most charismatic actor in Hollywood.
        I hope it’s a start for more female superhero led movies but I don’t trust DC. Hopefully Captain Marvel will kick ass.

    • Sat Tee says:

      Sorry, but the movie, a mon avi, was utterly mediocre. I honestly do not see what all the rave is about. So a woman directed and a woman starred… That is all good and well, but the end product was forgettable.

  7. Marianne says:

    Wonder Woman wasnt THAT good. Definitely the best in the DCEU so far but its not deserving of Oscars (outside some tech nods perhaps). If there was one comic book movie I’d like to see crack the “major awards” it would be Logan.

  8. lightpurple says:

    It might get some technical awards but nothing in the big categories.

  9. Mia4s says:

    I applaud the (late) PR effort and it should get a ton of craft and tech nominations but anything more is a massive massive long shot. I can imagine the Academy Board would love if it happened since it could help pump up the show ratings which are looking more and more dire! Just tech nominations won’t help; both Force Awakens and Rogue One had tech noms and stars featured as presenters and the rating continued to suck. Maybe having a popular blockbuster in the big race would draw some interest….or maybe not and we are all kind of over the Oscars?

    And hey if Justice League is awful and poisons the well they still have the very deserving Dunkirk. Not a bad year for WB!

  10. Jeesie says:

    I liked WW a lot, I saw it twice and recommended it to lots of people. It was very entertaining and a nice change of pace, but that said it’s not a great film. It had some major pacing and third act issues, the writing was decent enough but very far from great, and it did suffer a bit visually from still being under Snyder’s DC umbrella.

    All that to say, I won’t mind at all if it’s only nominations are for the tech stuff. Felt the same way about Deadpool. Fun movie, game-changing movie, glad it’s a huge success, but it’s not a great movie. And that’s not a knock on these films. It’s extremely rare that a big tent pole movie balances everything perfectly and results in something that ticks every box. Just making something that’s actually entertaining is hard enough.

    • Miles says:

      Exactly! And Deadpool got as far as it did during awards season because it was put in the comedy box. Ryan got a golden globe nod because he was put in the comedy box. If Deadpool was a drama, he wasn’t getting a nom. Wonder Woman will have to directly compete against the other dramas…like let me just say this. For example, I think Get Out deserves a best picture nom and Jordan Peele deserves a best director nod. Was Wonder Woman on the level of Get Out? Not even close. It was a good comic book movie, a great popcorn flick etc but that’s all Wonder Woman was. Lets not start giving it unwarranted accolades.

      • oliphant says:

        Get Out was amazing!! the main guy (cant remember his name) deserves a nom, such expressive eyes. and hot too 🙂

      • teacakes says:

        Get Out really needs to be in the Oscar conversation, and it’d deserve a BP nomination way ahead of Wonder Woman.

      • Maple Girl says:

        Didnt Get Out have some kind of controversy regarding the portrayal of Asian people? Wouldn’t that affect it’s chances?

  11. Neelyo says:

    Chris Pine should get a Supporting nod but It won’t happen.

  12. Don't kill me I am French says:

    I am pretty sure that it will win many….MTV awards

  13. BB Carrots says:

    Sorry, the conversation for DC / WB shouldn’t still be about Wonder Woman and milking that film for all it is worth (Wonder Woman the Sequel! Wonder Woman the Oscar Nom! Wonder Woman the breakfast cereal! Wonder Woman the flame thrower!). It should be, Oh golly, WW was a massive hit, so let’s look at all these other female drive DC properties that we dismissed before.

    Let’s build this momentum. Not everyone (or every woman) is a WW fan. The only DC property I can think of off the top of my head that isn’t a rogue is Death of The Endless. But outside of DC, there’s Kabuki, Fathom, Danger Girl……

    • Algernon says:

      I would buy a Wonder Woman flame thrower, just saying.

    • BorderMollie says:

      I agree personally and would love to see a WOC superhero especially, but WW needs to achieve franchise status before they start launching other female driven superhero films. The character is really the only big, iconic female superhero that stands on her own, so if her potential franchise doesn’t pick up (that second movie really needs to do well hence) they’ll just chalk this all up to a fluke. It’s really unfair, but this business is unfortunately.

  14. Jessica says:

    The writing wasn’t great and Gal’s acting was tolerable for the most part. That doesn’t scream Oscar worthy.

    • teacakes says:

      yeah, Gal is more than fine when she has to be charming or badass but portraying any kind of intense emotion is, let’s put it this way, a visible strain on her acting ability.

  15. teacakes says:

    Uh, I know WB is thrilled to finally have a non-Nolan superhero movie that doesn’t suck and everyone is hyped to have a female-led superhero movie that doesn’t suck, but an Oscar campaign? Please. Maybe for the technical categories, at best. And hire Patty Jenkins back for Wondy 2 already.

    If I absolutely had to nominate a superhero movie for an Oscar this year, it’d be Logan. And even then, that’s a big if.

  16. Maria says:

    If Suicide Squad can get an Oscar, Wonder Woman sure can get one! And this is coming from someone who liked both films.

    • teacakes says:

      Yeah, an Oscar for makeup.

      • Mannori says:

        I’d put my money on costume design, particularly the excellent job Lindy Hemming did for the Amazons costumes. Is incredibly the amount of research that went into those Amazons costumes and it gets lost because of the criminal little screen time the Amazons had in the movie. But I was chatting on twitter with the author of a book about The Amazons and Hemming has incredibly accurate on so many things: from Robin’s Wright hard leather armour to Connie’s alligator costume. Is based on ancient Roman and Greek warriors. Female warriors.

  17. lucy2 says:

    I’d love to see them get nominations, but I’d be very surprised if it won anything big. I loved the film, and I am not generally a comic book movie fan. I think it was very, very well done and everyone was great in it, but…it’s not a typical Oscar kind of movie.

  18. Mannori says:

    They’ll probably get some technical noms, but that’s about that, nope, sorry not Oscar worthy, not even Patty’s direction. Because the movie was an ok comic hero movie but nothing more than that. Gadot can’t act, Pine’s acting is below average (yes, pun intended), the only actors on that cast with the acting skills to pull off awards worthy performances were David Thewlis and Robin Wright but they did what they could with terrible character development and little screen time.

  19. Ayra. says:

    It wasn’t that good, really. I mean, don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a bad ot mediocre mobie by any means, but Oscar worthy? Eh..
    Gal was alright, she brought the attention and kept it, but Chris Pine was just amazing.
    Maybe for costume design, at most.

    Someone brought up Logan, and I agree entirely. That movie was one of the best movies I’ve watched in the past few years. It takes the top for comic-book adaptations too.

  20. ty says:

    unpopular opinion: WW is a bad movie, mainly due to its horrible script. some scenes were enjoyable but overall the story is predictable and the ending seems lazy n cliche. Im all for empowering woman and all, but seeing such a bad movie gets so much praise n success just make me disappointed.

    • LA Elle says:

      The movie was saved by the actors. I had my doubts about Gal (and still think she’s too skinny), but she’s possibly the first casting Warner Bros. absolutely nailed.

      But the movie is the first Captain America movie set in World War I with some different background! I liked the story the first time I saw it, and I liked the story the second time I saw it, and I just wish the female love interest had gotten as much praise as the male love interest.

      • teacakes says:

        @LA Elle – do you mean you wish Captain America’s love interest had got as much praise as Chris Pine is doing now in WW?

        Peggy Carter actually became a major fan favourite after Captain America 1, which is probably why Marvel not only played down Cap’s next love interest (Emily Van Camp is just a glorified cameo) and had Peggy references sprinkled throughout subsequent films, but also gave Peggy an entire spinoff tv show with Hayley Atwell back in the lead.

  21. KatM says:

    I really enjoyed the movie. I thought the visuals were very good and I really liked the story. I really liked how they tied WWII into the story. I rarely enjoy comic book inspired films typically speaking. It was fantastic to see a female superhero be the primary character.

  22. neil says:

    The best thing about this movie was the timing and zeitgeist (and the charge over “no-man’s-land” scene)… But let’s get real here; if this movie is Oscar worthy then that bar that separates the great from the mediocre is a low bar indeed. We are so desperate for good movies that when we are given merely competent ones we want to ascribe greatness to it.

  23. TPOE says:

    The movie was alright. A solid 7 at least. I really liked the first act and obviously the No Man’s Land scene. Chris Pine put in a good performance. Still I was a bit disappointed with it overall. The whole third act was bad (though to be fair that can be said about a few comic book inspired movies) and if we’re being honest, Gal Gadot is not a great actress and as far as I was concerned she struggled with some of the more emotional scenes and dialogue despite the fact that she had a good script (for the most part) and good director.

    Is it a good movie? Sure it is. Am I looking forward to the next one? You bet. Is it in anyway Oscar worthy? Not in my opinion.

  24. CLTEX84 says:

    There’s nothing special about WW other than its directed by a woman and is about a female superhero. That doesn’t justify it getting any kind of awards. Everyone is so overhyping this movie and it was just ok. Trying to give it award recognition just because defeats the purpose. A movie like Logan is definitely more deserving because its completely out of the box of that genre, and that’s what makes it a caliber film. The movie was not about superheroes, they just happened to be mutants, take all that away and the movie still works. Even though I got sick of the Wolverine movies, this one was great and a deserving swan song for Hugh Jackman, who deserves a nomination way more than Gal Gadot. Unfortunately scifi/fantasy/superhero/action movies have to be near flawless in so many ways to get a BP nod, WW is not close