If you're already overzealously planning your Oscar ballot for next year, put down your pens! First of all, it's way too early to be doing that. Secondly, Vin Diesel has already pinpointed the Best Picture winner for next year, so your work here is done.
In an interview with Variety, Vin Diesel declared that if Hollywood wants to maintain any shred of relevancy, they'd give [Furious 7](movie:264263) the top award.
Universal is going to have the biggest movie in history with this movie. It will probably win best picture at the Oscars, unless the Oscars don’t want to be relevant ever.
In other words:
He certainly has a point about the Academy Awards. The ceremony has made a habit of ignoring the most successful movies in favor of small films that the general public wouldn't even recognize. Diesel didn't stop there, though. He went on to double down on the recognition that Furious 7 deserves.
This will win best picture. There is nothing that will ever come close to the power of this thing.
Diesel claims the film, which pays tribute to Paul Walker following his untimely death, packs an emotional punch that many won't be expecting. He also said that the head of the studio, Ron Meyer, argued that the two last films in the franchise would have been in the best picture race if they didn't have "5" and "6" in their titles.
So, can the seventh film of this series really earn a nomination? Let's break down the potential that Diesel sees.
It's getting great reviews
After premiering at SXSW to a glowing response, Furious 7 currently has an 83% aggregate rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Typically, Best Picture nominees have at least an 80% rating when they are considered, so it's right in that range.
Of course, some of these reviews talk about how "stupid" the movie is (in a positive way), so its status as a critical darling may not be helping its case.
It has heart
Academy voters love a tearjerker and a comeback story. While the movie probably doesn't require a box of tissues, the circumstances surrounding it are enough to make any stuffy old man choke up. After Paul Walker's sudden death in a tragic car wreck, filmmakers needed to bring in his two brothers as stand-ins as well as a series of special effects to complete the story. Sometimes, the process can matter more than the movie itself.
It's expected to break box office records
When it opens on April 3, Universal is supposedly expecting to have the biggest movie in history according to Diesel. The franchise is already the most successful in Universal's history, ticking in at $2.4 billion. Plus, if there was ever a time to start honoring tentpole movies that support studios, it's now.
Though the Academy has received harsh criticism for overlooking movies that most people are seeing and thereby losing major viewership, they still seem entrenched in their old ways. Therefore, Diesel's earnest pitch just may fall on deaf ears, but wouldn't it be something to see Furious 7 nominated with a bunch of indies?