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Please be advised: the Museum will be open on Wednesday, June 19, 12:00–6:00 p.m. for the Juneteenth holiday.

Snubbed 2: The Performances

Jan 26 — Mar 24, 2024

How could they?! Last year, we debuted our series focused on films that unimaginably—at least in retrospect—received zero Oscar nominations. Though we bristle at the term “snub,” which presupposes some kind of intentional edict by committee rather than the unmeasurable outcome of a vast array of voters, we couldn’t help but use it as a shorthand to call attention to those films, recent gems and classics alike, that for some reason didn’t make the final list of the film industry’s greatest honor. Enthusiasm for the series, as well as the seemingly endless array of titles given Oscar’s cold shoulder, has encouraged us to go for a second dip into the treacherous waters of the Academy’s unloved.  

This year, we’re focusing exclusively on great performances that went unmentioned on Oscar nomination morning. There are a variety of reasons that specific actors or roles have been overlooked: they could be in an Oscar-unfriendly genre (horror, comedy, sci-fi), the character could be extremely unlikable or, conversely, they could make it look too easy. Often Hollywood fixates on career narratives: had they “established” themselves yet as “Oscar performers,” or was their talent just taken for granted? Our lineup includes stars never taken seriously enough to get nominated (Rita Hayworth, Marilyn Monroe, Steve Martin), underappreciated workhorses who have yet to win (Michelle Pfeiffer, Amy Adams, Alfre Woodard), and performers whose iconic roles just weren’t Oscar bait (Anthony Perkins in Psycho, Humphrey Bogart in The Maltese Falcon). Whatever the conditions or reasons, we feel all of these performances are worthy of our highest honor: serious consideration and close attention in the dark of the movie theater.

Complete list of films to come.

Organized by Eric Hynes, Curator of Film, Edo Choi, Associate Curator of Film, and Reverse Shot co-editor Michael Koresky.