As studios continue to move most of their big-budget titles away from 2020 due to the pandemic, more breathing room has been created for smaller, independent films that usually get swallowed up this time of year. One such indie that has caused awards pundits to salivate at its potential this year is A24’s Minari, director Lee Isaac Chung’s film about a Korean family who move to a farm in rural Alabama in the 1980s. The film stars Steven Yeun (The Walking Dead) in a performance most are indicating would go deep into the awards season if the film were to qualify.
However, despite having taken the Sundance Film Festival by storm in January, where it won the audience and grand jury prizes and is currently running a perfect 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes, it still wasn’t known until today if and when the film would be released for general consumption (and Oscar consideration). But today, Variety exclusively reports that Minari will indeed be an Oscar contender this year, as it will be released in theatres in New York and Los Angeles on December 11, with a wider rollout beginning on February 12, which is the Korean New Year. These dates make it eligible to be considered for the 2020 Oscars, which have been pushed back to April, 2021.
This is great news for not only the awards season in general, but for Hollywood’s greater push for diversity. A high profile for a Korean-American film with a potential for an Asian Best Actor nominee/winner would go far in moving the Academy further away from the Oscars-So-White nightmare it has endured lately.
See the full Variety story here for details.