Even the Razzies realized they went too far this time!
The Golden Raspberry Awards takes shots at all the movies that failed each year, nominating Worst Picture, Worst Makeup, etc. They may have started as a sort of antidote to the self-congratulatory Oscars, but lately they’ve just been thought of as kind of an unnecessary piling on. After all, in the age of Twitter and Rotten Tomatoes, the folks who make movies that miss the mark know about it right away.
But it’s remained, at best, a place for rich movie stars to laugh at themselves. Halle Berry and Sandra Bullock were good sports, famously attending and accepting their awards in person — in fact, Sandy B got hers the night before getting her Oscar!
So while it’s kind of a bad-taste tradition, no one is really worried about how it makes established names — like this year’s nominees Tom Hanks and Pete Davidson — feel. These guys can take a joke, even a poor one. Heck, two of the nominated films — Elvis and Blonde — are also up for Oscars this year! Something tells us their creators are doing fine. The problem this time? They nominated a freakin’ tween.
One of the nominees this year was the star of the Firestarter remake — no, not zaddy Zac Efron — they nominated a 12-year-old girl named Ryan Kiera Armstrong for Worst Actress. The film was lambasted by critics and horror fans alike, mostly for its failure to do anything fresh with the Stephen King adaptation that justified its existence. But critics didn’t even really single out Armstrong. The Razzies did. They called a 12-year-old girl (apparently 11 at time of filming) one of the year’s worst performances. Ugh.
The move got the Razzies more attention than they’ve gotten in years — but not in a good way. Industry vets and fans alike called them out for essentially bullying a child. Fellow child star Julian Hilliard, whom you might know from WandaVision or The Haunting of Hill House, wrote:
“The razzies are already mean-spirited & classless, but to nominate a kid is just repulsive & wrong. Why put a kid at risk of increased bullying or worse? Be better.”
The razzies are already mean-spirited & classless, but to nominate a kid is just repulsive & wrong. Why put a kid at risk of increased bullying or worse? Be better.
— Julian Hilliard (@_JulianHilliard) January 23, 2023
And it looks like for once the backlash got through! Razzies founder John Wilson actually apologized! In a statement backtracking, he called the criticism of the nomination “valid” and removed Armstrong’s name from the list:
“Sometimes, you do things without thinking, Then you are called out for it. Then you get it. It’s why the Razzies were created in the first place. The recent valid criticism of the choice of 11 year old Armstrong as a nominee for one of our awards brought our attention to how insensitive we’ve been in this instance. As a result, we have removed Armstrong’s name from the Final Ballot that our members will cast next month. We also believe a public apology is owed Ms. Armstrong, and wish to say we regret any hurt she experienced as a result of our choices.”
But that’s not all! The Razzies have now officially made it a rule to never again nominate a minor for any of their awards! The statement continued:
“Having learned from this lesson, we would also like to announce that, from this point forward, we are adopting a Voting Guideline precluding any performer or film-maker under 18 years of age from being considered for our awards. We have never intended to bury anyone’s career. It is why our Redeemer Award was created. We all make mistakes, very much us included. Since our motto is “Own Your Bad,” we realize that we ourselves must also live up to it.”
Seems like they’re actually doing the right thing! Good!
Of course, there are plenty of critics who wish the Razzies would just go away once and for all. But we’ll leave that debate for another time. What do YOU think, Perezcious readers?
[Image via Universal/YouTube.]