Oscar Watch: The Greatest Showman

20th Century Fox waited until the last minute to lift their review embargo off The Greatest Showman, which is out in theaters today. That’s usually not a great sign and that’s been mostly proven. The musical drama featuring Hugh Jackman as circus leader P.T. Barnum is garnering mixed notices and it stands at only 43% on Rotten Tomatoes.

For the last several months, Showman hasn’t been considered much of a factor in the Oscar mix. The reaction out this morning solidifies that notion. Even though it was nominated for Golden Globes in Best Musical/Comedy and Actor for Jackman, I expect neither to be possible when it comes to the Academy. The same, by the way, can be said for Jackman’s more acclaimed work in Logan. 

Reviews have noted that Showman is more successful as an exercise in style than substance. For that, it could factor into some technical categories. Costume Design, Production Design, and Sound Mixing are all feasible nominations, but there’s a good chance that never materializes with any of them. The Globes did nominate “This is Me” for Song and Oscar could follow suit there.

Bottom line: The Greatest Showman will not play in the major categories, but down the line technical recognition is still on the table.

My Oscar Watch posts will continue…

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