The TRUTH behind the 1982 Oscars

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Posted by adam from on May 24, 1998 at 00:27:16:

In Reply to: Re: Oscar nomination posted by raider on May 22, 1998 at 11:58:19:

: : :
: : : : I read somewhere that raiders of the lost ark was nominated for best picture when it was released,it his true? and also if anyone can remember back what little clip of the movie did they play for it? and how likely was it susupected of winning? Of course maybe it wasn't nominated i dont know,

: : : : Cheers

: : : Yes, you are correct in assuming Raiders was nominated. I remember it well. As a young boy of (11?) I was tremendously disappointed that the academy members apparently panned the movie during oscar voting. The sugary-sickly-sweet-old-fart-movie 'On Golden Pond' won for best picture that year. What an unmitigated load of sentimental bullshit. Best movie score? nope. Vangelis won for his 'chariots of fire' theme. I can listen to vangelis (esp. since he made it up to us with the Blade Runner soundtrack, starring Ford), but I can't listen to this song. I think Raiders won the usual bullshit awards, like special effects(Who else is going to get it? Lucas always won) or editing or bullshit like that. I remember critics giving the movie a half-assed two stars. This was, of course, before it was recognized as a ground-breaking classic. Hope they all learnt their lessons.

: : I agree, but remember that the academy usually awards the Oscar on sentiment, and On Golden Pond was Henry Fonda's last film, at the time being very ill, and therefore they thought they owed him the award. Regards. Michaelson

: i too remember the tragedy of that night. i was 9, but raiders didn't lose out to on golden pond. it was chariots of fire that won best picture and was i disappointed. i saw chariots of fire that year also with my father and it completely bored me, so me and a couple of friends who came occupied our time by throwing tootsie rolls indiscriminately from the back of the auditorium. oh, the memories.

Actually, you seem to be forgetting that while CHARIOTS OF FIRE won four Oscars that night (including best costume, best score, and best picture) it was RAIDERS which earned more Oscars than any other that year: five. And at the time, while the acting categories were pretty much easy to predict -- Henry Fonda and Katherine Hepburn for ON GOLDEN POND, and the wonderful John Gielgud for ARTHUR -- it was readily assumed that the big winner of the night was going to be REDS. Warren Beatty's film was heaped with some 11 or more nominations -- the most in over 15 years -- and it led most critics' lists as the best film of the year. But it would end up winning only a few, among them, Beatty for directing, and Jean Stapleton as best supporting actress.

CHARIOTS OF FIRE's win came as the Cinderella surprize of the evening -- and it is, admittedly, a fine film. But consider this: if it hadn't been for Vangelis' unearthly, majestic score, would the film have had the popularity that it did? Hmmm... Perhaps this was the only time in history that a film's musical score helped the production win the big old Oscar... (Don't get me wrong -- I love the film, and can understand why it won -- but certainly a major factor in its popularity is the music.)

But don't think Indy wasn't appreciated at the time. Some critics and actors actually felt that good old Harry should have been nominated (among them, classic tough guy Burt Lancaster and -- yup -- Tom Selleck). TIME, NEW YORK TIMES, PEOPLE, and NEWSWEEK all called it either the best or one of the best films of the year...

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