Critic: Oscars are Political Game Where Nominees are Picked by Hollywood Maids

Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

British film critic Barry Norman is already dismissing Sunday’s Academy Awards ceremonies, stating his belief that film selections are either political in nature or picked by the housekeepers of academy voters who are too lazy to watch films up for consideration.

Norman told the Radio Times: “There’s the question of whether all the voters actually saw all the films. It’s not unknown for some, especially the elderly, to get their maids to watch them on DVD and deliver their opinions.”

The critic also said being nominated for an Oscar is “a victory in itself,” but stated, ”It’s only when it comes to picking the winners that everyone votes in every category and the whole thing becomes little better than a crapshoot.”

“Personal likes and dislikes come into play. You might vote for someone simply because he or she was nice to you on the set,” Norman said.

He also stated he believes actor Michael Keaton will likely win the Best Actor award for Birdman, because he “is a local boy who has never won a major award.”

According to a report from the Independent, Chris Martin, of the rock group Coldplay, has openly admitted in the past to filling out consciously uncoupled ex-wife Gwyneth Paltrow’s Oscar paperwork.

“I read the instructions, which is like you’ve got to put your top five in order,” Martin recalled. “I did get a say on that form. I got to put a vote in. I voted for Mickey Rourke.”

According to the Independent, many suspect the more than 6,000 motion picture professionals who comprise the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences do not watch every film up for consideration, which they are required to do before voting on nominees.

The 87th annual Academy Awards will air Sunday Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. EST on ABC.


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