All around the world, fans gathered around their television screens, computer monitors and smartphones this morning for a once in a lifetime event: The chance to finally see "Harry Potter" gets some major Academy Award recognition. And once again, "Harry Potter" got snubbed, earning just three crappy nominations in technical categories nobody outside of the trade unions cares about at all.
They might as well just rename the awards The Voldemorts.
Of course, getting a major nomination for a crowd-pleasing blockbuster isn't always easy, especially when the series is viewed as entertainment for kids. We get it. But we also get the fact that "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2" was widely acclaimed by critics as the best film in the franchise, with a 96% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Then there's the fact that, over the last decade, the "Harry Potter" films earned a staggering $7.7 billion worldwide. Sure, even in America money doesn't always equal votes, but past history suggests that when a film makes huge money and gains critical acclaim it usually ends up taking home some serious hardware; just ask fellow fantasy epic "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King," which won a record-tying eleven Oscars in 2004. Or "Titanic," which wasn't even that well-liked by critics but still took home eleven Oscars in 1998, thanks to its record setting box office performance.
And it's not as if the "Harry Potter" films are filled with a bunch of no-names; with the likes of Maggie Smith, Michael Gambon, Ralph Fiennes, Jim Broadbent, David Thewlis, Emma Thompson and countless others, "Harry Potter" has become famous for employing perhaps the greatest ensemble of top notch actors (and Oscar nominees) ever assembled in one film series.
And that's not even counting Alan Rickman, who has been singled out by many critics for the incredible work he has done over the years as the story's most complex character, Severus Snape.
So why did the Academy once again pass over "Harry Potter," giving it nods only for Art Direction, Makeup and Visual Effects as though this were some kind of really nice Halloween party instead of one of the great cinematic triumphs of our age? That's a mystery fans will just have to live with, because after saying "wait till next year" for the last decade, there finally is no more next year left to wait for.
What a bummer.