Netflix crashes Hollywood’s Oscar party

January 14, 2020, 2:18 PM UTC

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Good morning. Fortune tech writer Danielle Abril filling in for Adam today. In about a month, Hollywood will come together for arguably the biggest night in the movie business: the 92nd annual Oscars.

And to the surprise, and in some cases frustration, of many, Netflix will arrive at the awards packing the most nominations of any movie studio. The online streaming service raked in 24 nominations this year, including two for best picture, eclipsing big blockbuster producers like Disney and Sony.

This is the first time a streaming service is the studio to beat at the Academy Awards.

Netflix is up nine nominations from last year—proving that streaming services aren’t pulling any punches when it comes to the content they’re producing. They’re taking on the big dogs via a slew of original films boasting star-studded casts including Robert DeNiro, Adam Driver, and Scarlett Johansson (and that’s just on Netflix!).

Not everyone is excited about the new nods from Hollywood’s elite. You might remember last year, following the Best-Picture nomination of Netflix’s Roma, Steven Spielberg argued that movies created by streaming services shouldn’t be eligible for an Oscar. His reasoning: Those films are made for the television screen, not big productions designed to be consumed by mass audiences in large theaters.

Still, while Netflix has managed to capture critics’ attention, it has yet to prove it can sweep.

Last year, Netflix won four of its 15 nominations, with Roma earning three. But it lost the coveted Best Picture award to Universal Picture’s Green Book. While Netflix likely will scoop up some serious hardware this year for The Irishman and Marriage Story, at the Golden Globes, those films took a backseat to Universal Picture’s World War I film 1917 for Best Motion Picture. Netflix only won two of the 34 awards for which it was nominated.

But the 2020 Academy Awards have already proven to be a historic moment for a rapidly changing entertainment landscape. Streaming services are now pushing out polished content that is capturing acclaim from critics and the public. They may need just a little more time to woo the Academy.

Danielle Abril

Twitter: @DanielleDigest


* * *

A note from Adam about yesterday’s email:

I know full well that Goldman Sachs, not J.P. Morgan, is Apple’s partner in its newly issued credit card that uses Mastercard’s network. I know this in part because I interviewed Harit Talwar, the head of Goldman’s Marcus consumer bank, at the Fortune Brainstorm Finance event in Montauk, N.Y., last summer. I can’t explain why my brain told my fingers to type “J.P. Morgan,” other than perhaps because my own company uses a J.P. Morgan-issued Mastercard. I apologize for misinforming you.

This edition of Data Sheet was curated by Aaron Pressman.


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Aaron Pressman

On Twitter: @ampressman


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