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The Start of the 2023 Cannes Film Festival Will Bring Some Potential Oscar Contenders to the South of France

Tomorrow, the 76th Cannes Film Festival gets underway. This year marks what seems like a return to what Cannes had been, pre-COVID. Now, there have been changes, to be sure, with more representation a welcome change, but the focus will obviously be on the movies. If the films are good, it’ll be a good festival. No fest is like Cannes, prestige-wise, so when something hits, it hits like nothing else.

Cannes 2023 has a nice mix of movies playing, with several hoping to begin a long run to awards season with a quality festival bow. To that end, I’ve mentioned a few below, helping to set the stage for what the fest will have to offer. More to come on these throughout the year, as you might imagine. Still, if you want an Oscar-centric short list to peruse, this could function as one, without a doubt.

First up, there are your obvious Oscar hopefuls. First and foremost, there’s Killers of the Flower Moon from Martin Scorsese. Ever since it was first announced, there were major assumptions about how big this one could be with the Academy. As long as it’s at least good, it’s likely set for some nominations. Now, if it’s great? That’s really something and could have major implications. Aside from Scorsese, there’s Todd HaynesMay December, which at least seems like an acting play for Julianne Moore and Natalie Portman, plus Wes Anderson‘s Asteroid City, which could be a major X factor, even if just in technical categories. Watch out for that to be a movie with some major affection, assuming it lands. Also, watch out for The Zone of Interest from Jonathan Glazer, which has prestige written all over it.

Then, we have the bigger films that could have a more targeted Academy Award campaign. There’s two of these, in the animated Pixar offering Elemental, as well as the blockbuster sequel Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny. The former certainly has Oscar aspirations, as all high quality Pixar releases do. So, while it’s pretty safe to assume Best Animated Feature is on the table, if it’s as good as it looks, there’s a real chance for more. As for the latter, could it be this year’s Top Gun: Maverick? That’s certainly the hope, but it could easily be a play below the line, if nothing else.


Of course, there are plenty of other titles, including Hirokazu Koreeda‘s Monster, Ken Loach‘s The Old Oak, Steve McQueen‘s documentary Occupied City, and the period piece Firebrand, which stars Jude Law and Alicia Vikander. That’s just a small sampling of what Cannes has, beyond the biggest flicks. Surely, one or two of these will be hits as well, perhaps to a larger extent than the ones everyone is assuming will be the class of the fest.

We shall see how the Cannes Film Festival turns out over the next week and a half. Maybe there will be some surprises? That’s probably a sure thing, but the only way to know is to let it happen. So, sit back, relax, and let Cannes reveal itself to us…

Stay tuned to see what does and does not hit at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival!


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Robert Hamer
12 days ago

You beat me in the Cannes Award predictions game last year, so I’ve been itching for a rematch with this go-around!



Written by Joey Magidson

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