In the last three years, of the 60 performances nominated by
the Academy (ten leading, ten supporting; five for sex) only two were existed
in in a film released prior to August. Daniel Kaluuya for Best Actor in Get Out
(24 February 2017) and Viggo Mortenson for Best Actor in Captain Fantastic (8
The Academy has a pretty short memory, and studios have learned to
adapt to it.
If a film has Oscar potential or features a performance that
has a chance to make the cut of 20, that film is likely going to be released
later in the year.
The later the film’s release, the more confidence the studio
has in its probability of winning. That said, technically films released
earlier in the year do have just as much opportunity for recognition as those
released in the awards season.
At least, that should be the case.
Academy voters are a busy bunch who still have lives and jobs outside
of their membership, thus they don’t always get to movies prior to cramming a
bunch of screeners from October to December.
The Oscars may ignore these spectacular feats
of performance, but we sure as hell won’t.