How mad do you think Lady Gaga was that she didn’t win an Oscar for A Star is Born? In the pantheon of recent egregious Academy Award snubs, it’s not exactly Gary Oldman winning over Daniel Kaluuya from Get Out and Daniel Day-Lewis in Phantom Thread with his pontificating and quasi-Lifetime Achievement performance of Winston Churchill in The Finest Hour – but it’s still an upset pick. Olivia Coleman was fantastic in The Favourite, but I was one of many who had a little bit of pocket change betting on Gaga for Oscar Gold.
Well, never mind that now: new Oscar cycle, new Oscar-bait performance. Gaga’s new role in Ridley Scott’s House of Gucci checks all the boxes that The Academy loves: a portrayal of a real-life person, guidance from a prestigious director, a fair bit of transformation in the makeup chair, and a wild accent to top it all off. The difference here is that, unlike most movies that seem squarely aimed to get as much award season buzz as possible, House of Gucci actually looks like a lot of fun.
Maybe I’m in the minority here, but whoever walked into the pitch meeting and said “The Devil Wears Prada meets Foxcatcher” is a genius. The new trailer for the film is completely focused on Gaga’s journey as Patrizia Reggiani, the wife of fashion businessman Maurizio Gucci. We get shots of Adam Driver as Maurizio, plus Jared Leto, Jeremy Irons, Selma Hayek, and Al Pacino as various House of Gucci members, but the latest preview makes it clear who the studio are putting their Oscar aspirations behind.
Another fun fact: Ridley Scott has yet to receive an Oscar for Best Director. The man who helmed Alien, Blade Runner, and The Martian has been bested by Robert Benton (Kramer vs. Kramer), Richard Attenborough (Gandhi), and Alejandro Iñárritu (The Revenant) during years where he wasn’t even nominated. Since the Academy Awards regularly hand out statues to legendary figures for some of their lesser works, it probably doesn’t really matter if House of Gucci is all that bad. Scott should probably be your frontrunner for Best Director now, whether it’s for Gucci or The Last Duel.
Anyway, good luck to Gaga in her tireless quest for an Oscar. Will she finally get her clutches on that sweet statuette, or will she feel the crushing blow of being looked over in favour of (checks notes)… Jessica Chastain for The Eyes of Tammy Faye? Maybe a Frances McDormand back-to-back for The Tragedy of Macbeth when that comes out? Definitely Nicole Kidman as Lucille Ball in Being the Ricardos. Possibly even Jennifer Hudson as Aretha Franklin in Respect, even though that film was hot garbage. Could the Best Actress category be completely filled with Oscar bait biopic performances? I’m getting my pocket change back out to put down some initial predictions.
Check out the new trailer for House of Gucci down below.