2024 Oscar Nominations Are the Wakeup Call Marvel Needs

The goodwill is drying up.

Marvel Studios

The most popular movies aren’t necessarily the best or most award-worthy, a gap that’s become especially true in recent years. Still, big-budget genre films often take home well-deserved Academy Awards in technical categories like makeup, sound editing, and visual effects. It’s thanks to those awards that movies like Suicide Squad and Harry and the Hendersons can bill themselves as “Oscar-winning.”

Marvel has also picked up a few Oscars. Black Panther won three in 2019, and Wakanda Forever grabbed Best Costume Design last year, while many other MCU films have been nominated. But the 2024 Oscar nomination list proves Marvel is getting pushed out the door, which is the latest bad sign for the studio after a year of underperforming movies.

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania was snubbed from the Best Visual Effects category, despite undeniably having a lot of them.

Marvel Studios

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania was completely snubbed this year, while Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 was only nominated for Best Visual Effects; the first Guardians also picked up a Best Makeup and Hairstyling nomination. The MCU was a major Oscar contender just last year, as Wakanda Forever earned five nominations, including a prestigious Supporting Actress nod for Angela Basset. That seemed like proof Marvel could find both awards and commercial success in a post-Endgame era.

Instead, this snub caps off a rough year for Marvel. Quantumania underperformed, and anyone who sat through its ugly adventure through the quantum realm can understand why it wasn’t picked for a Visual Effects nomination. Throw in The Marvels bombing, and Marvel being forced to undergo a sudden creative shift after parting ways with Jonathan Majors, and it’s unclear what the franchise will do next. Oscars aren’t the MCU’s greatest concern, but this one lonely nomination is just further evidence that the studio’s plan isn’t working.

Angela Bassett was Oscar-nominated for her performance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

Marvel Studios

The issue isn’t “popular” movies going unrecognized by the Academy: Barbie and Oppenheimer were showered with nominations. It’s not even voters being biased against goofy sci-fi movies, as Everything Everywhere All At Once dominated last year. This is simply proof that the MCU needs to change to get back on track. Let’s hope Marvel figures it out soon.

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