USC

Trojans weigh in on 2022 Oscar nominations and changes

With eight fewer televised categories and seven USC alumni nominees, SCA and Annenberg students discuss the award show’s impact on their careers.

Get out your best red carpet looks. Oscar season is upon us.

Hollywood’s biggest names will come together in the Dolby Theatre on March 27 for the 94th annual celebration of the Academy Awards that recognize the wonders of acting, film production, music and cinematography. This year, seven alumni from USC’s School of Cinematic Arts (SCA) have been nominated, including Kevin McCollum for Best Picture and Gary Rydstrom for Best Sound. The two were both nominated for their work on the acclaimed “West Side Story.”

“Seeing their names makes me confident about pursuing my career and gives the school a great reputation,” said Vaseo Munoz, a junior studying film production.

Munoz said he is inspired by the work of SCA’s alumni and current professors; however, he doesn’t necessarily want to follow in their footsteps.

“I don’t see the Oscars as an indicator of where I want to be in the future because most of the movies that I love are not nominated,” Munoz said. “It is really cool to get validation from people in this industry and your peers, but I don’t really see it as the main end goal.”

Khalif, a sophomore studying cinema and media studies, said that mentorship and guidance are the practical ways in which the relationships between the alumni and the school pay off.

“I think you have to be proactive to find the connections here, because the connections won’t come to you,” Khalif said. “The connections really help out, like [with] getting a job after school.”

For the first time this year, eight of the 23 awards will not be televised. These eight categories include documentary short, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, original score, production design, animated short and live action short and sound.

Claire Fogarty, a sophomore studying journalism and minoring in media and social change said she was shocked by the categories that were taken off.

“I have watched the Oscars every year, and what makes it special is the celebration of everything that goes into the making of a picture, not just the acting itself,” Fogarty said. “That’s why I am surprised that they took those categories off and brought back ‘Fan Favorite,’ which got a lot of backlash before.”

Across Twitter, “#presentall23‘’ is trending as many fans believe that eliminating the categories won’t attract more viewers, even if the live broadcast is shorter.

Despite the change, Halle Hazzard, master’s student studying specialized journalism in documentary filmmaking, said she thinks that the industry will be just fine.

“As long as there’s streaming platforms available, and they continue to produce documentaries, people will continue to watch them regardless,” Hazzard said. “It’s sad they took [the category] out this year, but documentaries will continue to flourish as they should.”

The Oscars will air on Sunday, March 27 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on ABC.