The Catching Fire Oscar Snub

We always have high apple pie in the sky hopes for The Hunger Games franchise, but we know that Catching Fire wasn’t going to get a shot at anything but technical awards, thanks to that “We don’t recognize anything that’s popular with the peasants” Academy attitude we’ve discussed before.

So you can imagine our reaction as we read down that list of nominees…

*scanning the acting categories*



Admission: We haven’t actual seen American Hustle yet. We’ve heard from others that Jen was fantastic, though the movie on the whole was a bit overrated. So YAY J-LAW!

We knew it would be the coldest day in hell when the Academy considered any actor for their role in a fantasy blockbuster aimed at young adults, even ones they love like Jen, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Stanley Tucci. Thus we’ll take little victories like actors we love getting nominated for other things.

And then…
*scanning the technical categories*

Bad Grandpa? The Lone RangerTWICE?! We don’t know what Disney is putting in that Academy kool-aid but DAMN, it must be powerful! But wait… No Catching Fire?!


What the actual fuck?

Let’s talk costumes. Many media outlets have repeatedly discussed the possibility of Catching Fire winning the Academy Award in this category as if the nomination itself was a no-brainer. And they’re right! Trish Summerville created a showcase of brilliantly crafted designs that not only looked spectacular on film, but told the story of each individual character. The intricate detail is honestly some of the most impressive costume design we’ve ever seen. Instead, pretty but same-y era movies got the recognition instead.

How about makeup and hairstyling? Are they really giving a nomination to The Lone Ranger for throwing sloppy face paint on Johnny Depp and Jackass for making Johnny Knoxville look geriatric? Yet the outrageous Capitol hair and makeup is totally overlooked! Then again, these are the same people who said the makeup that made Meryl Streep look like Margaret Thatcher was more award-worthy than the hundreds of intricate, unique designs found in the seventh Harry Potter film.

A small part of me wonders if Capitol Couture marketing hype, including the push into clothing and makeup sales (even going back to the nail polish line for the first film) , put a bad taste in the mouths of prominent Hollywood voters. Or maybe they don’t like that the style kinda mocks them. Who knows?

Don’t even get us started on visual effects! We’re glad Peter Jackson’s WETA got nominated for Desolation of Smaug, their work alongside the rest of the FX team on Catching Fire should also get recognition over most of the films actually nominated, which probably featured MORE special effects, but not necessarily effects of the same quality.

Alas, we should just accept that we’re talking about a bunch of old white guys making picks based off studio politics and this year, there was even less variety than usual. They stuck to their faves and they stuck to them HARD. Too bad it makes them look like total asses.

OH OH OH OH OH and MUSIC! Coldplay practically tailored ‘Altas’ specifically for the Academy. Plus, they tend to get attention of awards circuits in general. Now NOTHING? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

Go Home, Academy. You’re Drunk.
The Girl With The Pearl



  1. I knew it wouldn’t get attention for the acting categories in comparison to some of the bigger films of this year. But I was genuinely shocked by the technical snubs. I understood the first movie being overlooked because it was very flawed, artistically. But Catching Fire was beautifully directed and the special effects were outstanding. It was done by the special effects team for The Avengers, who were nominated last year.
    I think young adult franchises scare the Academy, honestly.
    This coming from someone who highly respects it and aspires to be a film critic. I thought it was unfair.

  2. The worst part is i don’t think the hunger games franchise could be in the short list for makeup and costume design again. Mockingjay isn’t as flashy as Catching Fire in terms of costuming. And idk how makeup for battle scenes will entice voters. My only hope is that Jennifer Lawrence’s performance absolutely kills in Mockingjay in such a way that the critics will be forced to recognize her performance thus the YA-genre itself.

    1. Agreed. Mockingjay Part 2 will feature The Capitol, but only as it’s crumbling and the people are in shambles, so it’s not likely we’ll see full force hair, makeup, or costumes. Unless the Academy recognizes the importance of the breakdown of those elements, but we doubt it. Maybe there’s still hope for effects?

  3. I completely agree with this. I simply cannot understand either the costume or the makeup hair nominations, ditto the original song category. Disappointing and, frankly, incomprehensible. But then I thought Robert Redford was a sure bet for his bravura solo performance in All is Lost…oh well, what do I know? Clearly nothing, according to the Academy.

  4. Kait, I forgot to mention that I think you are on to something with your theory about the Academy disliking the self satire — those super white teeth of Cesar Flickerman’s might really have chomped a little to close to Hollywood’s skinny bones! The Academy adores films that glorify ‘The Industry’ (example: over the top love for The Artist and Argo), so it makes sense that highly effective satire of Hollywood might be (perhaps unconsciously) resented.

    1. I don’t know, RDJ got nominated for Tropic Thunder, a straight-up satire of big-budget movie-making. And it was a flat-out, broad comedy at that.
      Also, I wouldn’t really say that THG satirizes “Hollywood” so much as reality/competition television and celebrity worship/obsession. This may be irrelevant or wrong, but I don’t even think they have movies in Panem anymore.

      1. It’s not do much a critique on movie making like Tropic Thunder (thinking back to that movie, film society probably considered it like a wonderful inside joke), but a critique of celebrity lifestyles: demanding the best of everything (even if its ridiculous and unnecessary), keeping up with the latest trend, and being totally disconnected from the real world. We could definitely see some people in Hollywood disliking the obvious comparison.

  5. I was thinking Costume was the biggest snub, and then you reminded me of Visual Effects and Original Song…Darn.. Almost wish you hadn’t :/

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