Academy Rule Change May Have Helped Put Spotlight on Magazine Articles

Screenwriter Josh Singer's analysis makes perfect sense.

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Good piece in the latest WSJ magazine by Stinson Carter about Hollywood’s current love affair with non-fiction magazine features as the basis for movie projects. A genre cemented by the runaway success of Argo.

Carter chatted with Joshuah Bearman, author of the Wired article from which Argo was drawn. He also airs out this astute observation from Spotlight co-writer Josh Singer:

Another element that may be bolstering these types of films is the recent change to the Academy Award nomination rules. “It wasn’t too long ago that there were only five best picture nominees, and now there can be up to 10,” says Singer. “What I think has been great about expansion is that a lot of people want a little statue. So you have hungry producers and they say, ‘Hey, it’s not just five. I can get in, I can get nominated.’ Non-fiction movies tend to do well in this category, so that expansion makes it that much more lucrative to make these movies—it gives hope.”

Up next in this Hollywood canon: War Dogs, coming in August, inspired by Guy Lawson’s Rolling Stone article “War and the Dudes.” Read the full WSJ magazine article here.

Image, via WSJ, courtesy: Universal Pictures