The Oscars Are Rigged!

Don’t be fooled by Hollywood’s biggest scam


Hasmik Tumasyan, Staff Writer

The Academy Awards, better known as the Oscars, is an awards ceremony honoring various merits in film. They’re widely regarded as the most prestigious recognition of excellence in the movie industry. Millions of people all over the world watch the Oscars each year, and the films that win these awards are usually seen as the best of the best. 

But this simply isn’t true. 

There’s actually a system to winning an Oscar, and it has nothing to do with “making the best movie.” 

Every year, a group of Academy members, including actors, directors, and artists, vote on each category of the Oscars. This system is not ideal, because not only is film excellence a highly subjective concept, but the Academy has proven itself to be easily bought out, despite their alleged expertise in the field. 

Marketing your movie correctly is the key to winning an Oscar. Studios spend upwards of $30 million on campaigns aimed at Academy voters. Commonly referred to as “For Your Consideration” campaigns, they consist of lobbying, print and online ads, private parties, and much more. The hefty cost of these campaigns makes independent filmmakers, who may not have the funds to market themselves as effectively, unlikely to be successful in the Oscars. 

Another example of the Academy’s unreliability is in their biases. Voters usually recognize films that are more “important” over anything else. The movies that they consider important tend to follow a certain trend. They’re regularly dramas with long runtimes, and they’re frequently period pieces. 

According to Business Insider, 93% of the movies that have won Best Picture are dramas, and in the history of the Oscars, sci-fi and horror movies have never won the award. (Only The Silence of the Lambs, which was awarded Best Picture in 1992, might be considered a horror movie, but that’s a stretch.)

The award for Best Documentary has also been the subject of criticism, with there not even being an official branch of the Academy dedicated to this field until 1995. Controversial outcomes in the documentary category have been going on for decades. Often, voters will go out of their way to snub the popular films, regardless of their quality. 

And that’s just scratching the surface of the Academy’s partiality. National Geographic found that around a third of Oscar winners for Best Actor and Actress were playing roles based on real people, further reinforcing voters’ bias towards historical movies. 

This favoritism leads to what we call “Oscar bait.” Studios will try to appeal to voters by changing various aspects of their films to create an air of importance, and more often than not, the Academy eats it up. Therefore, the Oscars are all about utilizing a formula rather than recognizing the best films.

Overall, the Academy Awards are a giant scam, and we need to stop measuring a movie’s worth based on its performance at the Oscars. They really aren’t rewarding the best movies. They’re rewarding the studio that coughs up the most money.