Every year, the world of cinema runs amok with the race for the coveted golden award, known as an Oscar or collectively Oscars, and also reputed as The Academy Awards. Hollywood studios spend millions of dollars to get their projects nominated for as many distinctions as possible, even going as far as spending equal to the production budget on marketing customized for the Oscars. Actors, actresses, directors, editors, cinematographers, animators, all aim for the golden statuette in their respective categories. The acceptance speeches tell of the gravity and positive effects of this recognition. And the year 2019 is no different from its predecessors, except that a leading man’s Oscar worthiness has been questioned due to the, as of now alleged, faults of the director. The actor being Rami Malek, the movie being Bohemian Rhapsody and the director being Bryan Singer.
Malek has been nominated for an Academy Award in the Best Actor in a Leading Role category and viewers have agreed that his portrayal of Freddie Mercury is second to none. Rami surely transformed himself into the legendary Freddie Mercury, but he went beyond just acting and mimicking, he embodied the essence and humanity of who Freddie was as a person. Mesmerized by his performance, Academy members eagerly voted to secure him a nomination, which was rightfully deserved.
All would have gone swimmingly for Malek, had it not been for the recent accusations against Bryan Singer which have been widely publicized since the expose by The Atlantic. The aforementioned fact has led to many questioning if Malek’s nomination for an Academy Award should be voided. His fans are also worried that the accusations against Singer might cost Malek a deserved Oscar. And that is the point of contention. Anyone with a moral compass are likely to be in support of the #metoo movement so any stance in defense of Rami’s nomination should not not confused as a support for Singer. The #metoo movement has been highly effective for the most part and applause for it has been heard all over the world and success of it has continued onwards for the sake of humanity. Masses and publications alike have stood up against Singer, and rightly so, but the accusations and purported wrongdoings of Singer has to be kept separate from the talents and success of Malek himself.
Should the faults of another, cost Malek, a highly deserved Oscar for Best Actor?
Does Rami Malek deserve to be affected due to the faults of the director of the project? No.
If Malek loses out on the Oscar ONLY due to the allegations against Singer, does that mean the rest of cast and crew should also have their paychecks revoked? Absolutely not.
If the director of a film, is directly responsible for its leading man’s Oscar prospects, then the director is also directly responsible for its entire cast and crew and their paycheck. But the previous statement would not be fair to the hundreds of thousands of people that put in their hard work into Bohemian Rhapsody. Malek was not responsible for the director’s actions and hurting Rami because of it, sets a negative precedent. A precedent which will be dangerous for cinema and every other industry, in the years to come. The allegations are against Bryan Singer and thus his name has been left out of all award shows this season for reasons we are all too aware of.
One of the many goals of the #metoo movement is to give voice to innocent victims. But wouldn’t denying Rami Malek his deserved Oscar wholly due to another’s faults, also result in taking away Malek’s voice, an actor, who happens to be innocent in this case.
By Pritan Ambroase
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