Black Panther and Batman Oscars Recap: Did Superhero Movies Win Anything?

Black Panther and Batman Oscars Recap: Did Superhero Movies Win Anything?

The 95th Academy Awards ceremony brought us many great moments, with Everything Everywhere All at Once being the night’s biggest winner and absolutely dominating the night. Besides EEAAO “smashing” the competition, people wondered how superhero movies would fare this Oscars since both Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and the movie Batman were regarded as the best superhero movies of the last few years. Marvel and DC had something to look forward to these Oscars – with some categories favoring the superhero films.

We will briefly recap what happened at the 95th Academy Awards ceremony and see if any superhero movies won and returned “home” with the golden statue. Moreover, we will discuss some of the odds and potential snubs of some categories and offer our opinion on how the most prestigious Academy in the film industry values the superhero genre. If you are interested in how Black Panther and Batman fared at the Academy Awards, stay with us until the end.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever results at the Oscars

Let’s start with Marvel and their Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The sequel Black Panther from 2018 had five nominations, two less than its predecessor. However, that didn’t stop some bookmakers and fans from betting on Wakanda Forever being the most critically successful Marvel movie ever.

The nominations include:

  • Best Supporting Actress
  • Best Original Song
  • Best Makeup and Styling
  • Best Costume Design
  • Best Visual Effects

All five nominations were extremely significant for a Marvel Cinematic Universe movie, and some categories seemed like Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will “come on top.” The whole Oscars ceremony was marked by the domination of the comedy-drama fantasy film Everything Everywhere All at Once, directed by Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheiner, also known as Daniels.

Black Panther and Batman Oscars Recap: Did Superhero Movies Win Anything?
Ruth E. Carter makes history by becoming the first black woman to win multiple Oscars in the Best Costume Design category.

Throughout the whole awards season, EEAAO was on the brink of dominating, except for the British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) and Golden Globe Awards, where Black Panther and other films, like The Banshees of Inisherin, were in a much better position. Of course, Screen Actors Guild Awards (SAGA) “steered the positive tide” in EEAAO’s direction, which won them seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Actress, and Best Film Editing.

Everything Everywhere All at Once had eleven nominations and became the third movie in history the win three acting awards. Moreover, EEAAO is only the seventh movie that won five out-of-major categories. Ultimately, EEAAO almost “swept” the competition, and some of them were “losers” of the night. Contrary to popular opinion, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, in my opinion, wasn’t, and here is why. 


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Before the Oscars, we heavily speculated how Wakanda Forever would win at least two Academy Awards – Angela Bassett for Best Supporting Actress and Ruth E. Carter for Best Costume Design. We argued that the Best Original Song category is “overwhelming” for Rihanna and her song “Lift Me Up,” and categories like Best Visual Effects, Best Makeup, and Hairstyling are most likely lost categories to films like Avatar: The Way of Water, Elvis, and The Whale. 

In the end, those three categories were lost for the Marvel movie, but the other two, Best Supporting Actress and Best Costume Design, were the categories where Black Panther should’ve had a much better chance of winning an Oscar. Ultimately, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever won one Oscar, specifically Ruth E. Carter, who replicated the success of the original Black Panther at the Academy Awards in 2019 when she won the Oscar for Best Costume Design. 

Black Panther and Batman Oscars Recap: Did Superhero Movies Win Anything?
Jamie Lee Curtis won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress over Angela Bassett for portraying Queen Ramond in Black Panther 2.

However, Angela Bassett’s loss to Jamie Lee Curtis in the Best Supporting Actress category didn’t sit well with many fans. People argued that Supporting Actress is the most unpredictable category of them all, and the three-way race between Stephanie Hsu, Angela Bassett, and Kerry Condon will determine the winner. However, the SAG Award for Jamie Lee Curtis pushed her to win the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, preventing Bassett from being the first actor to win the award in the acting category for one Marvel film.

Some fans were really mad since Bassett’s performance was more memorable and significant than Curtis’ was in Everything Everywhere All at Once (at least what some people thought), and the domination of fantasy comedy-drama was exaggerated. 

In my opinion, any actor nominated for an Oscar has a chance to win an Award, and Curtis’ award campaigning for EEAAO, and PR work since the movie’s release, greatly influenced the Academy’s vote for her to win. Curtis had a great performance in EEAAO, but I would argue that she wasn’t even the best supporting role in the movie – Stephanie Hsu was incredible and probably the real snub of the category.


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On the other side, Angela Bassett gave her all for the portrayal of Queen Ramonda, and her performance was amazing in Wakanda Forever, but this loss raises the question if the actor’s performance is enough for Academy to vote for them. Specifically, the reason “it’s a Marvel movie” seems to resurface for Bassett and her Oscar snub.

That reasoning might be a factor for Wakanda Forever losing Best Supporting Actress, but Queen Ramonda didn’t have that much screen time in the movie (just like Curtis’ role of Deirdre Beaubeirdre). Ultimately, both actresses had similar situations, and Jamie Lee Curtis’ win at SAGA pushed the actress to win an Academy Award eventually. Bassett was great, but if I have to choose between all actresses in the category, Stephanie Hsu and Kerry Condon were the strongest performers and were snubbed last night.

Overall, Wakanda Forever was successful tonight, and Costume Design for Ruth E. Carter is a great achievement, knowing how tough the competition was.

The Batman results at the Oscars

“The Batman” had fewer nominations than Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, going to the 95th Academy Awards ceremony with three nominations. The nominations included:

  • Best Sound
  • Best Makeup and Hairstyling
  • Best Visual Effects

In our last article, we speculated that Batman wouldn’t win any awards, and unfortunately, it came true. Each category was “stacked” with talent and great work, and unfortunately, for DC and Warner Bros, Reeves’ Batman was never going to take anything from last night. 

The Best Sound category was determined even before the Oscars since Top Gun: Maverick won the Cinema Audio Society and Motion Picture Sound Editor awards, while the German movie All Quiet on the Western Front won a BAFTA – Batman didn’t get any major award for this particular category, to warrant the Oscar win. 

Top Gun: Maverick won the award for Best Sound, and frankly, this category was already decided. 

Black Panther and Batman Oscars Recap: Did Superhero Movies Win Anything?

The Best Makeup and Hairstyling category was closer than Best Sound, but The Whale and Elvis were in front of Batman to win the Academy Award. Furthermore, wins of each movie would’ve propelled the chances of Austin Butler and Brandon Fraser winning the Academy Award for Best Actor, and frankly, this win was important. The Whale won the Best Makeup and Hairstyling award, which made a stronger case for Brandon Fraser to win the Oscar for Best Actor. Batman simply didn’t stand a chance.


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Visual Effects award was a sure win for Avatar: The Way of Water, and other competitors just couldn’t compete with James Cameroon and his visual masterpiece.

“The Batman” didn’t win any Oscars, and some fans argued that this version of Batman should’ve got the nominations like The Dark Knight – I don’t agree with that notion. Batman was a quality movie but isn’t as good as Nolan’s Dark Knight.

Future of superhero genre at Oscars

What does this mean for the future of the superhero genre in major film awards? It definitely means a lot. We cannot say that Hollywood and the rest of the film industry decided to change their ways in a few years and suddenly think that the superhero genre is legitimately in the same quality tier as regular, award-appealing featured movies. Martin Scorsese’s comments and opinion of superhero movies are still pretty noticeable in the film industry, and that notion will be in effect for years to come. 

Don’t get me wrong, all of these reasons are legitimate – superhero movies were never truly top-tier masterpieces. Even the incredible and one of the best modern movies ever made, The Dark Knight, wasn’t nominated for Best Picture in 2009 – the Best Supporting Actor being the only acting “major” category in which Dark Knight was nominated.

Black Panther and Batman Oscars Recap: Did Superhero Movies Win Anything?
Black Panther and Batman set a precedent for the future of the superhero genre that will compete among the “elite” for major awards.

Dark Knight is a blueprint of how the superhero genre is supposed to be, but the Academy didn’t want to nominate it in more major categories. Reeves’ Batman was a great movie; it was absolutely incredible for the superhero genre, but thinking it had to have more success than it got is a bit too much. Some comic book fans argue that the superhero genre movies, like Doctor Strange and Avengers: Infinity War, were similar to what George Lucas and Stanley Kubrick were doing 40 to 50 years ago with their movies. 

I think it’s disingenuous to compare vastly different eras of filmmaking and dismiss blueprints of modern cinematography. At the same time, dismissing superhero movies solely for being adapted from comic books is wrong – the quality and performances should “be weighted” as the project is a feature drama film.

Nevertheless, we saw Heath Ledger win the Best Supporting Actor Award in 2009, and this year Angela Bassett was nominated for Best Supporting Actress. These two examples should be a blueprint for future acting performances in superhero movies. 

Bassett’s performance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was memorable and incredible because of Chadwick Boseman’s passing and the ways of the film’s tribute to an actor that left us too early. Bassett is an incredible actor, and if EEAAO wasn’t such a hard competitor, the legendary actor would probably win the Oscar.

Major awards are changing standards each year, and I don’t doubt we will see more superhero genre movies nominated in more notable categories – we just need quality superhero movies, and DC and Marvel have a lot of work to do.

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