• Joseph Morganti

2023 Oscars: Best Original Screenplay Contenders

There’s a lot to get excited about with the 2023 Oscars, considering how strong of a year cinema is so far in 2022. Of the categories, the best original screenplay nominee is tough to narrow down, primarily because of how many great films are in the category for this year. But hey, the tougher that is, the more great films there are to digest!


Nevertheless, below will highlight a few films from 2022 that might get nominated for best original screenplay. Remember, none of these are definite, though some are more likely to get nominated than others. Of course, there are likely a few other options that aren’t on this list. Regardless, let’s take a look!


The Banshees of Inisherin

Writer: Martin McDonagh


Logline: Two lifelong friends find themselves at an impasse when one abruptly ends their relationship, with alarming consequences for both.


As great as Martin McDonagh is, most agree The Banshees of Inisherin is the filmmaker’s magnum opus, at least so far. It’s hilarious, heartbreaking, and a staple of fine writing in an interesting setting.

Photo credit: Vox


Tár

Writer/Director: Todd Field


Logline: Set in the international world of Western classical music, the film centers on Lydia Tár, widely considered one of the greatest living composer-conductors and the first-ever female music director of a major German orchestra.


Todd Field’s first film since 2006’s Little Children will surely gain some Oscar attention, and Tár certainly lives up to the hype. It’s a powerful film that focuses on a deeply flawed character, filled with conflict, questions, and more.

Photo credit: Collider


The Fablemans

Writers: Steven Spielberg, Tony Kushner


Logline: Growing up in post-World War II era Arizona, young Sammy Fabelman aspires to become a filmmaker as he reaches adolescence but soon discovers a shattering family secret and explores how the power of films can help him see the truth.


It’s safe to say that anything Steven Spielberg does will most likely draw some Oscar attention. Furthermore, a film that’s semi-autobiographical from Spielberg is surely getting nominated.

Photo credit: Glitter Magazine


Everything Everywhere All At Once

Writers: Dan Kwan, Daniel Scheinert


Logline: An aging Chinese immigrant is swept up in an insane adventure in which she alone can save the world by exploring other universes connecting with the lives she could have led.


The buzz surrounding Everything Everywhere All At Once indicates that it will get some Oscar acclamation. It’s a beautifully entertaining film that is sprawling theme-wise and takes so much from its various influences.

Photo credit: Vanity Fair


Decision to Leave

Writers: Park Chan-wook, Seo-kyung Chung


Logline: A detective investigating a man's death in the mountains meets the dead man's mysterious wife during his dogged sleuthing.


Like so many other filmmakers, anything Park Chan-wook does is worth discussing, and Decision to Leave has the critical response to support its Oscar potential.

Photo credit: MUBI


Triangle of Sadness

Writer: Ruben Östlund


Logline: A fashion model celebrity couple joins an eventful cruise for the super-rich.


Few films are as dense as Triangle of Sadness, and its three-part format makes an interesting question of what the Academy might do this year. Will the film’s dense naturehold it back? Time will tell.

Photo credit: The Newyorker


NOPE

Writer: Jordan Peele


Logline - The residents of a lonely gulch in inland California bear witness to an uncanny and chilling discovery.


The Academy has always had an odd reaction to Horror, but it’s possible they’ll ignore that usual trend and Nominate Jordan Peele’s NOPE. Like Get Out and Us, Jordan Peele has proven again he’s a modern-day auteur.

Photo credit: CNN


Aftersun

Writer: Charlotte Wells


Logline: Sophie reflects on the shared joy and private melancholy of a holiday she took with her father twenty years earlier. Memories, real and imagined, fill the gaps between as she tries to reconcile the father she knew with the man she didn't.


Although it hasn’t gotten a major release like some other nominees, Aftersun is a unique film worthy of any film’s accolades.

Photo credit: Vulture


Babylon

Writer: Damien Chazelle


Logline - A tale of outsized ambition and outrageous excess, it traces the rise and fall of multiple characters during an era of unbridled decadence and depravity in early Hollywood.


With the cast in Babylon, it’s hard to imagine it won’t get nominated as many bigger-budget films tend to do. Will it live up to the hype? We’ll see, but it’s safe to assume it’ll get some nominees.

Photo credit: Variety


The Woman King

Writer: Dana Stevens


Logline: A historical epic inspired by true events in The Kingdom of Dahomey, one of the most powerful states of Africa in the 18th and 19th centuries.


The Woman King effectively installs stories of individual trauma and struggle inside more extensive frameworks of oppression. Will the academy ignore it as they have similar films in the past? We shall see.

Photo credit: NPR


Close

Writers: Lukas Dhont, Angelo Tijssens


Logline: The intense friendship between two thirteen-year-old boys, Leo and Remi, suddenly gets disrupted. Struggling to understand what has happened, Léo approaches Sophie, Rémi's mother. "Close" is a film about friendship and responsibility.


It’s not likely that Close will get the attention deserves, but there is always a slim chance. The film moves throughout its runtime and is a delicate and capably acted take on childhood innocence lost.

Photo credit: Variety