2023 Oscars Best Live Action Short Predictions
The nominees for the 2023 Academy Award for Best Live-Action Short Film are altogether more hopeful than what the Academy has been aiming for in the recent past.
We’ll be updating these predictions throughout awards season, so keep checking IndieWire for all of our 2023 Oscar picks. Final voting will take place March 2-7, 2023. The 95th Academy Awards telecast will air Sunday, March 12 and air live on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT.
Check out IndieWire’s previous Oscar predictions for this category and more here.
The state of the race
A look at some of the recent winners of best live-action short film shows that the Academy’s taste for films in this category tends to be a bit somber. That’s not to say films shouldn’t be challenging — often those are the sort of shorts that do well with Oscar voters — but it’s somewhat reassuring that not every nominee in this year’s series needs to have a trigger warning.
Acclaimed Italian filmmaker Alice Rohrwacher’s ‘Le Pupille’ happens to be streaming on Disney+, which is an indication that the film, about young girls at a Catholic boarding school, is suitable for the whole family. (But Rohrwacher isn’t shy about adding some black humor.) As the executive producer of two-time Best Director winner Alfonso Cuarón, “Le Pupille” would be a change should it win Best Live-Action Short, but so it seems welcome this year.
“Ivalu” actually fits well into the type of film that’s expected to grab the attention of voters in this category, which makes even more sense knowing that it’s directed by Anders Waller and produced by Kim Magnusson ( a permanent contender), who teamed up again to make it after their 2014 film, Helium, won Best Live-Action Short. The story of a young Inuit girl searching for her missing sister skillfully touches on sensitive issues and astonishes viewers with its picturesque shots of Greenland.
However, all signs point to Ireland being the country Oscar voters fell in love with in 2023. “An Irish Goodbye” has the same thing damned Atmosphere as Best Picture Contender The Banshees of Insiherin is a mix of humor and heartbreak, but ends on a note that leaves viewers wanting more (in a good way). Similarly, The Red Suitcase ends in a slot designed to keep viewers wondering what’s next for the protagonist. That’s an element that benefits many short films, but could also cause voters to overlook the two films because they seem too much like a TV pilot or proof of concept for a longer feature film, rather than a fit-for-purpose short .
Finally, “Night Ride” is perhaps its least successful at balancing emotional heaviness and lightness, but that would be splitting hairs. Like ‘Le Pupille’ it plays on the holiday season and like ‘An Irish Goodbye’ it offers a meaningful depiction of people with disabilities, but the way it captures a car robbery is delightfully unique.
The nominees are listed below in order of their probability of winning.
“An Irish Farewell”
“The Red Suitcase”
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