There are several amazing aspects to legendary composer John Williams’ nomination for an Academy Award the other day in Best Original Score for Steven Spielberg’s semi-autobiographical “The Fabelmans,” and the numbers tell a remarkable story. Let’s take a deep dive into those – beginning with his age.
- Williams is 90 years old, making him the oldest person ever to be nominated for a competitive Oscar. It breaks the record held by director Agnes Varda and screenwriter James Ivory, both of whom were 89 when they were nominated in 2018. But think about this for a moment. How many 90-year-olds do you know who are still operating at the top of their work game? How many 90-year-olds do you know who are still alive? Williams is still being honored with the highest tribute in his industry as he begins his 10th decade on the planet. It’s beyond remarkable.
- This is Williams’ 53rd Oscar nomination. That’s a 5 in front of a 3. He’s second all time to Walt Disney, who had 59. His first nomination came in 1968, or a mere 55 years ago, and he’s now been nominated in seven different decades. Walt received all of his nominations in just four different decades.
- As insane as this seems, Williams is long overdue for a win. The last time he took home one of the trophies came for “Schindler’s List” in 1994, or 29 years and 23 nominations ago. He’s won only five total. cashing in less than 10 percent of his nominations for gold. He’s won only twice in the past 40 years, the other coming in 1983 for “E.T.” (He also won for the score of “Fiddler on the Roof” in 1972, “Jaws” in 1976 and “Star Wars” in 1978.) It’s probably time to give the man another one of these things. He’s more than earned it, and voters don’t know how many more of these opportunities they’ll get.
- Speaking of which, isn’t it time that the film academy considers giving the man an Honorary Award at this point as well? I mean , what does a guy have to do?
- This is the 17th time that Williams has been nominated for his work on a Spielberg film but the first time the two have been nominated for the same film in 10 years, when he was honored for “Lincoln.”
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