A Summary of the 2023 Oscars

by Olivia Riportella '25 on April 8, 2023
A&E Staff

Arts & Entertainment

The Academy Awards are back for the 95th annual Oscar celebration, paying tribute to a whopping nine and a half decades of cinema. The event took place this year on Sunday, March 12, returning to its home at the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood, Los Angeles for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic. After experimenting with multiple hosts at last year’s historic award ceremony, the Oscars invited Jimmy Kimmel back as the sole host for this year’s show, which honored movies released in 2022. 

The 95th Academy Awards were one for the history books with a remarkable number of firsts. With performances from artists such as Rihanna and a surprise performance from Lady Gaga, the 95th celebration was star-studded indeed. Rihanna delivered a captivating tribute to the late Chadwick Boseman with her Black Panther: Wakanda Forever theme song “Lift Me Up,” which also received a nomination for best original song. Gaga confirmed her performance minutes before the ceremony, singing an emotional, stripped down version of her best original song nominated “Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick. At the end of the night, the infectious “Naatu Naatu” from Indian blockbuster RRR took home the trophy for best original song, making history as the first Telugu song, and first Indian film, to win the original song Oscar. 

Everything Everywhere All At Once had by far the biggest night at the Academy, as it took home seven awards out of its eleven nominations. Sweeping nearly all of the biggest categories in the film industry, the futuristic film from the studio A24 took home the award for best picture, best director, and three of the four major acting categories. Making history once again, Michelle Yeoh of Everything Everywhere All At Once took home the trophy for best actress, becoming the first Asian woman to receive the award. In an emotional comeback story, Ke Huy Quan took home the title for best supporting actor, becoming the first Vietnam born actor to win an Oscar. After early career success in movies such as Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and The Goonies, Quan’s career grew stale to the point of resorting to stunt work. This win marks a big comeback for him. “Dreams are something you have to believe in,” Quan remarked in a tearful speech. “I almost gave up on mine. To everyone out there, please keep your dreams alive.” 

The night became even more emotional when John Travolta returned to the stage at nearly 70 years old to introduce the In Memoriam tribute, as he tearfully remembered his late “Grease” co-star Olivia Newton-John, who passed away last year after a long battle with breast cancer. “In this industry, we have the rare luxury of getting to do what we love for a living, and sometimes getting to do it with people that we come to love,” Travolta said. “Since tonight is a celebration of the work and the accomplishments of our community this past year, it is only fitting that we celebrate those we’ve lost who’ve dedicated their lives to their craft, both in front of and behind the camera.” Using the words of one of Newton-John’s most famous Grease songs, Travolta ended with saying, “They’ve touched our hearts, they’ve made us smile, and became dear friends who we will always remain hopelessly devoted to.”

Grammys Recap 2023

by Olivia Riportella '25 on March 5, 2023
A&E Staff

Arts & Entertainment

Music’s biggest night proved that they are back and better than ever after the historic 65th Annual Grammy Awards this past weekend. With performances from icons such as Harry Styles, Bad Bunny, Mary J. Blige, Steve Lacy, Lizzo, Stevie Wonder, Luke Combs, Kim Petras, and Sam Smith, and among others, this award show was jam packed with action that you did not want to miss.

Most notably, the celebration of hip-hop was at the center of the Grammys this year in order to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the genre. LL Cool J introduced the segment by awarding Dr. Dre a 2023 Global Impact Award to honor his achievements in the music industry over the decades. LL Cool J hailed Dre as “an icon who helped define West Coast Hip Hop and has become one of the most impactful success stories of our time.” Following his acceptance speech, the Academy invited a slew of the genre’s biggest and most innovative figures such as Missy Elliott, Lil Wayne, Big Boi, and even contemporaries such as Lil Uzi Vert and Lil Baby to perform during this special ceremony. 

History was also celebrated for a different reason at the 65th Award Show, as Beyoncé officially became the most decorated Grammy winner ever. Beyoncé is now rightfully crowned “Queen of the Grammys” as she took home her 32nd trophy this year for “Best Electronic/Dance Album.” Beyoncé’s whopping total of 88 Grammy nominations have her tied with her husband Jay-Z for all time number of Grammy nods. With her first ever award dating back to 2001, her 22 years in the making has finally surpassed the late legendary Hungarian conductor Georg Solti, who held 31 statues. Kim Petras also became the first transgender woman to ever receive an award from the Academy, marking another historical landmark for the 65th Award Show.

There was fierce competition amongst all 91 categories this year, and of course, especially within the “Big Four” categories: Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Record of the Year, and Best New Artist. The top prize Album of the Year went to Harry Styles for Harry’s House, which was almost inescapable due to the mass media attention and love that Styles received for his third studio album, marking his first ever Grammy Award. Song of the Year went to Bonnie Raitt for “Just Like That” in a surprise win, as she beat out huge industry staples Taylor Swift, Beyoncé, Harry Styles and Lizzo for one of the night’s biggest prizes. Record of the Year went to Lizzo, who became a fourth time Grammy winner, and dedicated her award to Prince in a heartfelt speech about the importance of dedicating her life to making positive music. Finally, Best New Artist went to Samara Joy, a Gen-Z artist born and raised in the Bronx. Samara released her first album, self-titled Samara Joy, in 2021, but her sophomore album, Linger Awhile released in 2022 is what demanded the Academy’s attention, getting her two nominations for Best New Artist and Best Jazz Vocal Album. 

It’s Not Exhausting Always Rooting for Taylor

by Olivia Riportella '25 on November 4, 2022
A&E Staff

Arts & Entertainment

A Review of Taylor Swift’s New Album, Midnights

After two years of re-recording her music, Taylor Swift has finally returned with original songs for her 10th studio album, Midnights. In a historic release, Midnights has already smashed streaming records and has become this year’s best-selling album. Swift has proven once again that she is on top of the music industry, whether it be re-recording albums from a decade ago, randomly dropping a surprise release, or releasing an album she canceled years ago.  She has shown that she will always come out on top. 

Swift was inspired by 13 sleepless nights in her life for the production of her latest release. She described the journey with her album, saying, “These 13 songs are a collection of music written in the middle of the night, a journey through terrors and sweet dreams.” Midnights emphasizes reflection more than innovation, as Swift returns to pop to describe the trials and tribulations of love, life, and navigating her insecurities and self-criticisms. She invites us to hear the introspection of her deepest feelings, as she painfully states that “life is emotionally abusive.” 

Midnights is Swift’s first album to be recorded entirely with Jack Antonoff, whom she has worked closely with for years. It plays with a mixture of electronica, synth-pop, dream pop, and chill-out music to create a moody, reflective vibe. This is seen throughout the setlist as she experiments with grooves and vintage synthesizers in tracks like “Lavender Haze” and “Midnight Rain.” Drawing from 1970s fashion and aesthetics, Swift creates a glamorous visual effect for this album through her music videos. Differentiating from her folkish style on her previous sister albums Folklore and Evermore, Swift brings back the glitz and glam for Midnights

After two months of building up anticipation for her newest album in a traditional roll-out through a TikTok series called Midnights Mayhem, where Swift revealed the album’s track list through one random selection at a time, Swift added to the excitement by teasing a “very chaotic surprise” that would occur hours after the release of Midnights

This surprise manifested into an extended version of the album, titled Midnights, (3am Edition). It features seven new songs that were written for but ultimately excluded from Midnights. Swift could not help but share them as her fascination with “vault” songs has led her to spoil her fans with tons of new tracks with each new release of an album. Arguably the most beloved song coming from these tracks is the gut wrenching “Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve,” which many are claiming to be her best song from the entire album.

Midnights had the biggest first week for any album this year, as it almost doubled the number of sales of the previous title holder, Harry’s House by Harry Styles. Coming in with a high of 72.5 million streams, Midnights absolutely smashed the Spotify record for the most single-day streams for an album on the first day of its release. It now holds the title for the third most streams in a single week by an album ever. In the U.S., Midnights has become 2022’s fastest and best-selling album, along with logging the highest vinyl sales week of the 21st century. 

Returning the Art

by Olivia Riportella '25 on September 18, 2022
A&E Staff


27 Artifacts Seized from the Met

At the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, several search warrants have recently been carried out under the pretext of looting. Authorities have ordered the museum to return dozens of objects that were illegally imported into the country from abroad, estimated to be worth around 13 million dollars. These objects serve as a reminder of the glories of ancient civilizations such as Rome, Greece, and Egypt. 

According to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, these artifacts will be returned to their respective countries of origin, as they were wrongfully displaced. “We have two repatriation ceremonies next week, one with Italy and one with Egypt,” a spokesperson said. “Fifty-eight objects will go back to Italy, twenty-one from the Met. Sixteen to Egypt, six from the Met.” Braggs did not reveal where the other artifacts were seized from, but they will be returned in the Reparations Ceremony alongside those from the Met as an effort to make amends. 

Some of these items have found their way to individuals that have long-standing accusations of illegally trafficking antiques, such as Gianfranco Becchina, who ran a private gallery in Switzerland for decades. Eight artifacts seized from the Met were acquired directly by Becchina himself, in addition to a total of 6,300 artifacts being confiscated from his possession in 2011. Authorities have warned that many relics are still in the hands of thieves and dealers around the world, as law enforcement has expedited its efforts against the illegal sale of ancient artifacts. However, most of the artifacts from the Met were taken from their homelands long before the underground galleries of today existed. 

The ongoing investigation has already led to the repatriation of over 2,000 objects, with no intention of slowing down. The efforts to return historical artifacts to their countries of origin has been ongoing for several years now, as rising awareness of international art crime has opened many museums to intense scrutiny. “The norms of collecting have changed significantly in recent decades,” the museum said, “and The Met’s policies and procedures in this regard have been under constant review over the past 20 years.”

A terra-cotta kylix, or a drinking cup, from 470 B.C. was one of the most significant pieces among the artifacts that were seized from the Met. Valued at $1.2 million, it was purchased directly from Becchina’s illegal gallery in 1979. This item is predated by a gifted terra-cotta statuette of a Greek goddess traced back to around 400 B.C., which is valued at $400,000.

 In 2021, three pieces of African art, including two brass plaques made in Benin around the 16th century, were repatriated to Nigeria. European museums were the first to begin returning irreplaceable African antiques to their countries of origin that were looted during colonial times, which influenced the Met to follow suit. Cambodia also welcomed back 30 antiques from New York officials in August, including a 10th-century Khmer sculptural “masterpiece” that had been lost. This post-colonial era of reparations will hopefully return autonomy to these nations that were destroyed by conquest and imperialism.

Magic and Madness in Marvel’s Multiverse

by John Downey '23 on May 6, 2022
A&E Co-Editor

Arts & Entertainment

Magic and Madness in Marvel’s Multiverse

Film Preview: Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

Olivia Riportella ’25

After a long six years of waiting for a sequel to 2016’s Doctor Strange, to Marvel fans’ excitement, Benedict Cumberbatch will finally return to the big screen as the titular character in a second standalone film. Brought to life with director Sam Raimi’s imaginative visuals, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness will be the 28th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Although potential spoilers about the movie are being kept very carefully under wraps, some information about it has been revealed ahead of its May 6 release date.  

As is the case with any other MCU movie, there are many preceding films and plotlines that are necessary to fully understand the film. In order to have a complete understanding of the movie’s depth and the stakes of its storyline, it is best to watch all of the MCU movies. However, for those short on time, the projects that will likely have the most direct bearings on Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness are Doctor Strange (2016), Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021), Loki (2021), WandaVision (2021), and the animated short What If… Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands? (2021).

No Way Home sees Dr. Strange perform a forbidden spell to help Peter Parker (Tom Holland) that spirals out of control and opens the multiverse. Strange’s actions bring Spider-Men from non-NCU projects, namely, those played by Toby Maguire and Andrew Garfield, into the MCU. Similarly, Loki introduces the idea of multiple timelines and “variants,” or different versions of the same character from different timelines. As Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness’ title suggests, the arrival of the multiverse and “variants” in the MCU will lead to unlimited possibilities and overall madness. 

Indeed, Doctor Strange is set to go on a thrilling ride through the multiverse as he tries to fix his mess from No Way Home with the help of his trusted friend and fellow sorcerer, Wong (Benedict Wong) and sorceress Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen). The latter character is the center of WandaVision, in which she embraces her powers as the Scarlet Witch and taps into abilities that seem to be far beyond the domain of any other character that has been introduced in the MCU so far. The show sees Wanda toe the line between hero and villain, an interesting development that makes her return in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness all the more exciting.

Notably, one of the new film’s main villains seems to be a Dr. Strange “variant” from What If… Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands? In this alternate universe, Strange cannot accept the death of his beloved Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams). Despite making infinite attempts to travel back in time and prevent it, he cannot prevent her from dying. His refusal to accept her death drives him into insanity and leads him to absorb dark powers from interdimensional beings that make him a dangerous threat. 

The endless possibilities that come with opening the multiverse will undoubtedly lead to numerous cameos from fan-favorite MCU characters—and Marvel characters not yet introduced into the MCU—in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. As of right now, it is all but confirmed that X-Men’s iconic Professor X (Sir Patrick Stewart) and a live-action version of the animated What If…?’s Captain Carter (Hayley Atwell) will be appearing in the film. There is even speculation that other stars such as Chris Evans, the MCU’s Steve Rogers, will be making a cameo appearance as his Fantastic Four character, Johnny Storm. 

Truly, almost anyone from the MCU and beyond could arrive in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Undoubtedly, then, this new Marvel film will not be one to miss.

Taylor Swift to Receive Honorary Doctorate From NYU

by John Downey '23 on April 8, 2022
A&E Co-Editor

Arts & Entertainment

Taylor Swift to Receive Honorary Doctorate From NYU

Singer-Songwriter and NYU’s Graduates Will Be “Feelin’ ‘22”

Olivia Riportella ’25

Taylor Swift will soon be able to add a doctorate degree to her already long list of achievements. After her busy year of releasing chart-topping albums Fearless (Taylor’s Version) and Red (Taylor’s Version) as well as related projects and music videos, while also re-recording future Taylor’s Version releases, the prestigious New York University has announced that they will be awarding Swift an honorary doctorate degree. The “All Too Well” singer will receive a doctorate in fine arts, honoris causa.

Swift is set to be awarded her doctorate on May 18 at Yankee Stadium, the same morning that NYU’s class of 2022 will receive their degrees. The superstar has also been selected to deliver the commencement speech for those graduates that same day in what the university is deeming a “traditional” ceremony. Notably, later in the day, NYU intends to hold a separate “doubleheader” commencement ceremony to honor the classes of 2020 and 2021, who were unable to have their respective ceremonies last year and the year prior due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a recent statement, the Manhattan school expressed that they regard Swift as “one of the most prolific and celebrated artists of her generation.” They also emphasized the singer-songwriter’s wide variety of achievements, highlighting her status as the only female artist in history to win the music industry’s highest honor, Album of the Year at the Grammys, three times. 

NYU’s decision to honor Swift this May is not too surprising given the star’s presence in the university’s curriculum. Indeed, NYU is currently offering a course dedicated to Swift and her work. The course is held at the university’s Clive Davis Institute and is being taught by Rolling Stone reporter Brittany Spanos. According to a representative for the program, Spanos is covering Swift’s evolution as a creative music entrepreneur, the discoveries of youth and girlhood present throughout her discography, the legacies of country and pop songwriters, the politics of race in contemporary music, and Swift’s influence on young songwriters such as Olivia Rodrigo and Billie Eilish. 

In a statement on the purpose of the course, Spanos expressed, “[I hope students] learn how to appreciate [her] type of songwriting and listen to her and understand her beyond the way that the public has shaped her.” 

As Spanos’ remark indicates, Swift has had a turbulent relationship with the public over the years, with everything from sexist stereotypes of her only writing about her love life to the infamous events of summer 2016 leading people to form opinions about her that are less than accurate. Spanos hopes that students will evaluate the truth behind such perceptions of the singer-songwriter and learn to appreciate her artistry and great musical achievements. 

Although Swift herself does not have a hand in this course, her upcoming receipt of an honorary degree from the school as well as the important role she will assume as NYU’s 2022 commencement speaker suggests that she has nothing but a positive relationship with the university. Needless to say, both she and NYU’s graduating seniors will be “feelin’ ‘22” on May 18.

Old Songs Find New Life on TikTok

by John Downey '23 on March 26, 2022
A&E Co-Editor

Arts & Entertainment

Old Songs Find New Life on TikTok

How the App Celebrates Multiple Generations of Music

Olivia Riportella ’25

TikTok, one of the world’s most popular social media apps, has proven to be more than just a platform for dancing and silly skits. It has evolved into a bridge between generations, connecting them through music that holds meaning in both the past and the present. Many classic hits, along with lesser-known songs from past eras, have recently been revitalized by young people on the app. Indeed, this new generation of TikTokers is taking these songs to new heights of popularity.

One such song that has found new life on TikTok is “Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes).” The 1970 tune from one-hit-wonder Edison Lighthouse was an unlikely pick to resurface 52 years later, but has exploded across the app. To embody the “Rosemary aesthetic,” TikTok users have used the song to post clips of themselves over its opening lyrics, “She ain’t got no money/Her clothes are kinda funny/Her hair is kinda wild and free/Oh but love grows where my Rosemary goes…” As a result of this trend, the old-school pop song saw an astounding growth of 1,490 percent in streams in the 10-day period between Dec. 25, 2021 and Jan. 3. “Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)” even broke into Spotify’s U.S. top 200 Chart, sitting just outside of the top 100. 

Another classic 70s track that has found new life thanks to TikTok is the iconic hit “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac. When TikTok user “Dogg Face,” whose real name is Nathan Apocada, stole everyone’s hearts with a clip of him skateboarding while holding a bottle of cranberry juice and singing along to “Dreams,” the tune was brought back to life. A whole new generation became enamored with the sweet melody of Stevie Nicks’ soothing serenade. After Apocada’s clip went viral, the song returned to number two on the Rolling Stone 100 chart, reentering commercial charts for the first time in over 40 years. Apocada even received a shoutout from Stevie Nicks and Mick Fleetwood themselves after the reemergence of their hit song prompted the superstars to create their own TikTok accounts. 

A more recent “throwback” that has caught the attention of TikTok users is sister band Aly & AJ’s “Potential Breakup Song.” This 2007 single from the duo, whose full names are Alyson and Amanda Michalka, made an exciting return to popularity due to its angsty teen breakup lyrics that resonated with Gen Z-ers. Clips of young people lip-syncing to the song went viral across the app, bringing about an epic comeback for the Michalka sisters. There was such a resurgence in “Potential Breakup Song” across TikTok that the artists were prompted to re-record the single a decade later—this time, featuring explicit lyrics. One year after their return to the spotlight, the duo dropped their first album in 14 years. 

TikTok has proven to have the uncanny ability to launch songs new and old into the stratosphere. The app’s unique power, combined with Gen Z’s fascination with bygone eras and the proliferation of streaming services in the music industry, makes it possible for even just a song clip to go viral and bring the entire tune to unprecedented popularity. 

A Superb Super Bowl Halftime Show

by John Downey '23 on March 3, 2022
A&E Co-Editor

Arts & Entertainment

A Superb Super Bowl Halftime Show

Hip-Hop Artists Deliver a Historic Performance

Olivia Riportella ’25

The Super Bowl LVI halftime show could quite possibly go down as the greatest halftime show of all time. With electrifying performances from superstars Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Mary J. Blige, Eminem, Kendrick Lamar, and a surprise appearance from 50 Cent, the 2022 display is truly unmatched. 

What is particularly special about this show is that it marks the first time ever that a lineup consisting solely of hip-hop artists has taken the Super Bowl stage. Despite hip-hop dominating mainstream music and the culture of the NFL for quite some time, such artists have never headlined the event until now. However, the league’s celebration of hip-hop and its evolution over the past three decades made for a spectacular, high-energy performance. 

The show was kickstarted by the legendary Dr. Dre. If anyone was the star of the night, it was he. He floated up from his producer’s chair with his arms outstretched to Los Angeles, asserting his West Coast’s sonic dominance. Indeed, sitting behind a mixing board in a nod to his roots as a celebrity, he essentially declared himself the patron saint of the West Coast sound. What made Dre stand out the most from his fellow performers is the work that he has done with them over the years, helping each of them achieve some of the most significant milestones of their careers. 

The perfect opening, Dre’s timeless song “The Next Episode,” filled the audience with nostalgia as he and Snoop Dogg electrified the stage with ease. Snoop sported a blue and gold bandana-patterned tracksuit from head to toe and topped off the ensemble with white sunglasses, looking cooler than ever. He finished his opening performance by teaming up with Dre to sing hit song “California Love,” originally by Dre and the late Tupac.

Next to perform was unexpected guest 50 Cent, who made an unforgettable surprise appearance. Delivering his smash hit “In Da Club,” 50 Cent showed up below Snoop and Dre hanging upside-down in a red-lit room full of dancers. This iconic entry was a nod to his 2009 music video for “In Da Club,” in which he also appeared hanging upside down from the ceiling.

Next, the feminine energy of Mary J. Blige captivated the audience, as the performance cut to her singing her hit “Family Affair.” Blige was covered in white and silver sparkles from her bodysuit down to her thigh-high boots, surrounded by dancers wearing similar iterations of her dazzling ensemble. Blige then shifted into her hip-hop soul ballad “No More Drama,” solidifying her set as a perfect middle act. Notably, Blige was the only non-rap artist who performed. 

Kendrick Lamar was next to take the stage, rising up out of shipping boxes labeled “Dre Day” to perform his iconic song “M.a.a.D. City.” Lamar then switched to his single “Alright,” a rather socially-charged anthem. He was backed by dancers in militaristic black suits, making a clear statement about today’s social climate in the midst of Black History Month. Dre and Eminem then joined Lamar onstage to finish his set with “Forgot About Dre.”

It was then Eminem’s turn to wow the audience. The rapper gave an angsty, chill-inducing performance of his iconic single “Lose Yourself.” He truly shook the stadium as he sang the track more flawlessly than ever. What made Eminem’s performance even more special is the fact that it was Dre who signed him to his very first record deal, and thus played a large role in propelling him to fame. Notably, like Lamar, Eminem also took a political stance, ending his performance by taking a knee in honor of Colin Kaepernick and other African-American NFL players who have protested racial injustice and have been met with controversy. 

To cap off this stellar lineup, Dr. Dre returned to the stage. He took to the piano and began to play the opening bars of “Still D.R.E.” At this moment, all of the night’s performers united atop the stage for one final song— one, of course, produced by Dre. The literal and symbolic unity of this ending to their superb performance confirms these artists’ everlasting sonic dominance not only in hip-hop, but across mainstream music as a whole.

The 2022 Oscar Nominations

by John Downey '23 on February 18, 2022
A&E Co-Editor

Arts & Entertainment

The 2022 Oscar Nominations

A Look at the Most Notable Nominees and Snubs

Olivia Riportella ’25

The nominations for the 2022 Oscars have officially been announced in anticipation of the Academy Awards’ 94th annual ceremony. This exciting list includes names and films from a wide range of genres. Set to take place on March 27, the awards will feature its first host in three years, although it is not yet publicly known who has been chosen for this honor. 

Notably, every year, the Academy creates a theme for the ceremony, and this year’s theme is “Movie Lovers Unite,” which is quite fitting given that this is the most highly anticipated and closely watched Oscars season in years. Indeed, from big-budget films to small arthouse productions, the 2022 race is already on track to make history. 

The film that dominated this year’s nominations was The Power of the Dog. Notably, four of the movie’s 12 nods are for acting honors, and the movie’s director, Jane Campion, has made history with this drama by becoming the first woman to be nominated in the Best Director category more than once. Campion was previously nominated for her work on the 1993 drama The Piano. Trailing close behind The Power of the Dog is the sci-fi epic Dune, which secured 10 nominations, including the night’s top prize of Best Picture. 

Moreover, in addition to Campion’s exciting feat, a second directing nominee has set a new record: the iconic Steven Spielberg. His production of West Side Story earned a whopping total of seven nominations from the Academy. Spielberg has now set the record for most films nominated for Best Picture, with 11 to his legacy. Denzel Washington is another record-setter, extending a record he holds as the most nominated Black actor ever by earning his 10th nomination for his performance in The Tragedy of Macbeth.

The Best Actor category produced expected and deserving nominations. In addition to Washington, Benedict Cumberbatch was nominated for The Power of the Dog, Andrew Garfield for tick, tick…BOOM!, Will Smith for King Richard, and Javier Bardem for Being the Ricardos

The Best Actress nominations also did justice to this year’s standout performances, with Nicole Kidman nominated for Being the Ricardos, Olivia Colman for The Lost Daughter, Penelope Cruz for Parallel Mothers, Jessica Chastain for The Eyes of Tammy Faye, and Kristen Stewart—in her first Oscar nomination ever—for Spencer.

There is always room for nomination backlash, however, in light of major snubs. An anticipated pick for the Best Actress category was Lady Gaga for her performance in House of Gucci, but the leading lady was not named among the nominees. Another surprising snub this year was in the Best Director category. Denis Villeneuve, who directed the ten-category nominated motion picture Dune, was noticeably not recognized.

Yet another major motion picture snubbed this year was Spider-Man: No Way Home. While the Academy tends not to consider franchise movies for its awards, fans were hopeful that the Marvel film would prove an exception to the rule: it has already become the sixth highest-grossing movie in global box office history, seen nearly $1.8 billion in ticket sales, and was easily the highest-grossing movie of 2021. Although Sony Corp. and Disney Co. were both campaigning for this critically acclaimed film to receive its due recognition, their efforts were to no avail. 

Nevertheless, this year’s pool of Oscar nominees is talented and deserving, which will undoubtedly make for an exciting and entertaining awards ceremony.

The Show Will Go On—It’s Just a Matter of When

by John Downey '23 on February 10, 2022
A&E Co-Editor

Arts & Entertainment

The Show Will Go On—It’s Just a Matter of When

2022 Grammys Postponed Due to COVID-19 Concerns

Olivia Riportella ’25

The 64th Grammy Awards have officially been postponed due to concerns about recent COVID-19 surges. Music’s Biggest Night was originally set to take place on Jan. 31, 2022, in Downtown Los Angeles at the Crypto.com Arena, formerly known as the Staples Center. However, the significant increase in COVID-19 cases over the past month led health and safety experts, state officials, and the artistic community to make the difficult decision to postpone the show. This does not come as a surprise, as many shows with in-person elements have been canceled or postponed nationally in recent weeks. 

However, the Academy has updated the terms of the show as of Jan. 18, with a new, exciting location: the 64th Grammy Awards will now take place in the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday, April 3.

The 2021 Grammys were also forced to postpone and ended up being a drastically scaled-down virtual show, with minimal live performances and most Grammy Week events canceled. Regardless of the fact that the 2022 Grammys have been forced to make similar adjustments, the Recording Academy and its joint partner CBS have stated that they still “look forward to celebrating Music’s Biggest Night,” and are hoping for a full show with a live audience on this defining night for the music industry. 

Indeed, due to current COVID-19 trends, many Grammy Week Events canceled last year have been canceled this year as well. The annual Pre-Gala event hosted by Clive Davis and the Recording Academy, for instance, will not take place. However, some other Grammy week activities, such as the Person of the Year Gala set to honor Joni Mitchell, will go on. The Gala will take place in Las Vegas. 

The 64th Grammy Awards will be hosted by Trevor Noah of the Emmy Award-winning broadcast program The Daily Show. This will mark Noah’s second consecutive year as the master of ceremonies after receiving high praise for his performance hosting of the 63rd annual show. Jesse Collins, Ben Winston, and Raj Kapoor will serve as executive producers, with Kapoor taking over for Winston as this year’s showrunner. 

The Recording Academy has already released its star-studded list of nominees in all 86 categories. Leading the pack with 11 nominations in total is ​​Jon Batiste, the soulful artist who serves as the bandleader on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” Justin Bieber (eight), Doja Cat (eight), H.E.R (eight), Olivia Rodrigo (seven), and Billie Eilish (seven) all trail closely behind with multiple nominations to their names. Notably, Rodrigo has secured herself a spot in all four of the Grammys’ top categories: Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best New Artist.

Despite the ongoing difficulties that the Grammy Awards are facing, the ceremony still promises to make for a fantastic show. Indeed, the Recording Academy and CBS are working hard to deliver an unforgettable night for the artistic community and those streaming the event from the comfort of their homes.