2023 Oscar Nominations: 8 Snubs & Surprises

Paramount Pictures / A24/ Merie Weismiller Wallace / © Universal Pictures/ Courtesy Everett Collection

The 2023 Oscar is officially underway, and with it, more than a few snubs and surprises have arrived alongside the list of the year’s nominations.

There are some deserving recognition from the Acadamy, such as Angela Bassett‘s nomination for Actress in a Supporting Role in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Then some films and talents weren’t mentioned at all, such as Jordan Peele‘s Nope and Gina Prince-Bythewood’s The Woman King or Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie for their work in Babylon.

Below, we’re breaking down some of the biggest shockers, from exciting surprises to disappointing snubs, and let us know what you’re most surprised about this year’s nominees in the comments section below.

95th Academy Awards, Sunday, March 12, 2023, 8:00 pm et, ABC

Women Talking - Emily Mitchell, Claire Foy, Rooney Mara
Michael Gibson / Orion Pictures /Courtesy Everett Collection

SURPRISE: Women Talking (Best Picture)

After receiving great reviews coming out during all the fall film festivals, the word seemed to die down on the film. Plus, a story about women deciding if they should leave their Mennonite community after being drugged and sexually assaulted doesn’t sound very entertaining. Despite this, the film and performances therein shined through enough to receive a nomination.

James Cameron on the set of Avatar: The Way of the Water
Mark Fellman /© Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

SNUB: James Cameron, Avatar: The Way of Water (Director)

Say what you want about his pretentious film comments or his overhyped films, but the man still knows how to make a blockbuster. Through the decade and painstaking detail, Cameron was able to create a sequel to Avatar through the pandemic and have it reach $2 billion worldwide at the box office. He surely deserves recognition for, at the very least, still being a money-making miracle worker.

Angela Bassett in Wakanda Forever
Angela Bassett, 2022. © Marvel / © Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

SURPRISE: Angela Bassett, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (Supporting Actress)

Angela Bassett’s performance was so good it overcame the Academy’s harsher standards of acknowledgment for genre films. We’re sure her Golden Globe win earlier this year also played a part in her Oscar nomination, as well (also well deserved.) Here’s hoping she’s able to bring another award home this year.

Mia Goth in Pearl
A24 / Courtesy Everett Collection

SNUB: Mia Goth, Pearl - (Lead Actress)

True fans of cinema (the ones that don’t overlook genre) know why the Academy didn’t recognize Goth, and it indeed isn’t because of her performance. Goth delivered one of the best monologues this year in this A24 slasher. Unfortunately, the Academy perpetuates the idea that genre film has higher hurtles to overcome than dramas when it comes to receiving its acknowledgment.

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Netflix's Blonde

SURPRISE: Ana de Armas, Blonde (Lead Actress)

For as much controversy and ire this film brought about upon arrival, it’s shocking to see de Armas getting recognition for her performance in it. In addition to getting a nod from the Academy, the film also received recognition from The Razzies for Worst Screenplay and Worst Picture.

Paul Dano and Gabriel LaBelle in The Fabelmans
Weismiller Wallace / © Universal Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

SNUB: Paul Dano, The Fabelmans (Supporting Actor)

Paul Dano plays the patriarch of the titular Fablemans, and he plays it realistically subdued. As a result, his feelings of being a shadow amongst his loved ones and not as respected as he should be, come through the screen. Dano delivers an understated performance that was sadly overlooked, but we’re sure he’ll receive his flowers amongst audiences.

Judd Hirsch in The Fabelmans
Universal Pictures

SURPRISE: Judd Hirsch, The Fabelmans (Supporting Actor)

Although he’s only around for a limited time, Hirsch’s performance as a deranged, circus-working uncle in The Fabelmans leaves a lasting impression. However, Uncle Boris is only present for as long as he visits his estranged family, and we feel another supporting actor was snubbed in the actor’s stead.

Tom Cruise in Tom Gun: Maverick
Paramount Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

SNUB: Tom Cruise, Top Gun: Maverick (Lead Actor)

Much like what happened at the Golden Globes this year, Cruise was snubbed yet again for his starring role in Top Gun: Maverick, a film he spearheaded production for through the pandemic, successfully reaching over $1.4 billion at the box office. The film currently sits with a 96 percent Rotten Tomatoes score.