For Your Consideration: Episode 22 – The Curious Case of the Mister Rogers Documentary

     January 29, 2019

On this week’s For Your Consideration, Collider’s awards experts Perri Nemiroff and Jeff Sneider break down the below-the-line Oscar nominations as well as all the snubs and surprises therein. Last week, the gang focused on the main six categories of Best Picture, Best Director and the four acting races, but this week they dive into the animation and documentary races, as well as editing, cinematography and many more.

We know what you’re thinking. How can this week’s FYC not mention the SAG Awards. Well, with Scott and Perri at the Sundance Film Festival this week, the episode had to be pre-taped. But don’t worry, Perri and Jeff still have plenty to talk about — especially regarding the egregious snub of the Mister Rogers documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor? Both hosts were gigantic fans of the film, and director Morgan Neville was even nice enough to come on the show late last year, but despite being showered with precursor awards, the Academy’s documentary branch relegated the film to the sidelines on Oscar nomination morning. It was not a beautiful day in the neighborhood, to put it mildly. And Jeff was disappointed by the snub of Three Identical Strangers as well.

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Image via Focus Features

So what went wrong? Well, Jeff theorizes that voters felt the Mister Rogers documentary relied too heavily on pre-existing footage. As great as the interviews were, the film did feature an awful lot of iconic moments from Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, and that may have rubbed the Academy the wrong way. The same reasoning could be used to explain the snub of the Jane Goodall documentary Jane last year. It was considered a frontrunner by many, but so much of that film was shot by Goodall’s trusted cameraman, not the Jane filmmakers themselves. In terms of the both films’ reception, that doesn’t really matter, but Jeff can at least see the logic in denying Neville a nomination, no matter how much he and Perri disagree with that decision.

There are many other questions, of course. Is Lady Gaga‘s power ballad “Shallow” a lock for Best Original Song, or could Kendrick Lamar and SZA‘s “All the Stars” from Black Panther pull off an unlikely upset. How can Roma be considered the frontrunner for Best Picture without an editing nomination? With Justin Hurwitz‘s original score for First Man ignored by voters, which film is the new frontrunner in that category? Black Panther, or If Beale Street Could Talk? Jeff prefers the latter, but wouldn’t be upset if BlacKkKlansman won either.

Elsewhere, Perri is obviously delighted that Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse landed a nomination for Best Animated Feature, where it’ll be taking on another superhero movie in Pixar’s Incredibles 2. That will be a tight race, as will Best Production Design, where Black Panther squares off against The Favourite, a film that shouldn’t be underestimated given its 10 nominations. And Best Cinematography is also exciting, as three of the nominees hail from foreign language features.

Scott will return to the show nexxt week, so to keep up with all things For Your Consideration, follow the gang on Twitter and Instagram at @MovieMantz, @PNemiroff and @TheInSneider. Hit up the comments section and let us know what you thought of today’s episode. Stay tuned next week for our SAG Awards discussion and we’ll FYC-ya later!

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Image via Sony Pictures

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Photo by Lukasz Bak/Image via Amazon Studios

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