Is There Hope for a Best Stunts Oscars Category?

David Leitch’s new movie The Fall Guy, featuring Ryan Gosling as a stuntman turned unlikely hero, has reignited the ongoing discourse in the film industry about the lack of recognition for stunt work at the Oscars. Despite receiving accolades at the Emmys and the Screen Actors Guild, the Academy Awards do not have a category for honoring the skills and risks undertaken by stunt performers. With The Fall Guy’s record-breaking stunt garnering attention, voices within the community are once again calling for recognition of their craft at the Oscars.

Academy’s Failure to Recognise Stunt Performers

In the production of action films, the contribution of stunt performers often goes overlooked despite the inherent risk and skill involved. The Screen Actors Guild and the Emmys acknowledge this unique art form, however, the trend does not extend to the Oscars. Neither the main event nor the untelevised Scientific and Technical Awards specifically honor stunt performers.

Industry Dismay Over Lack of Recognition

The Fall Guy’s stunt department head, Chris O’Hara, recently voiced his discontent to The LA Times. He raised objections about the irony of actors receiving accolades for playing stunt performers, such as Brad Pitt in Once Upon a Time…In Hollywood, while the actual stuntmen and women are ignored.

Celebrating Stunt Work in The Fall Guy

David Leitch, known for his past work as a stuntman, opted to honor the art of stunts in The Fall Guy. The film featured a daring “cannon roll” stunt, which involved a moving car flipping in the air after being shot from underneath with a cannon-like mechanism. Outstandingly, stunt driver Logan Holladay achieved a record-breaking eight and a half revolutions in a Jeep Cherokee, surpassing the previous record of seven revolutions from Casino Royale.

Hopes for a Best Stunts Oscars Category

In the quest for recognition for stunt performers at the Oscars, industry veteran Jack Gill has been an advocate since the early 1990s. He emphasizes that while stunt performers do not aim for the glamor of acting, they seek recognition among their peers for their immense sacrifices. Hope is not lost, as evidenced by the recent title change for The Fall Guy’s Chris O’Hara from typical “stunt coordinator” to “stunt designer”, and the heartfelt tribute to the stunt community by Ryan Gosling and Emily Blunt at this year’s Oscars.

With the Academy announcing a new category for casting in 2026, O’Hara believes that stunt work could follow suit. It is only a matter of making a valid case and persisting in the advocacy.

Wrapping Up

The Fall Guy, set to release theatrically on May 3, boasts exceptional stunt work that may turn the tide of the discourse, finally persuading the Academy to give stunt performances the recognition they deserve at the Oscars. For more information on the film industry’s latest news and updates, visit HitPlay.

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