What happened to the Razzies?

Published 10 years ago by , Updated February 9th, 2012 at 9:02 pm,

For a long time, I have taken sadistic glee in all the “worst of” awards, such as the Golden Raspberry awards (a.k.a. The Razzies). But I have to say, this year really disappointed me. The “winners” didn’t make any sense to me, for the most part. Now don’t get me wrong; I understand that the Razzies are very lighthearted, and basically not meant to be taken seriously. The problem I had this year is that a hefty percentage of this year’s winners weren’t even professional actors. When the parody awards can’t even get it right, we’re in a sad state of affairs.

Just as everyone was counting on Jamie Foxx to win the Best Actor Oscar, everyone was equally counting on Halle Berry to win the Worst Actress Razzie for her starring role in Catwoman. And she did. In fact, she showed up to accept it, and even gave a self-deprecating speech. I think it’s safe to say that her presence there was the only classy moment of that night. What really shocked me, though, were three Razzie awards in particular.

Winning two Razzies was none other than President Bush for his work in Fahrenheit 9/11. He “won” for Worst Actor and also for Worst Screen Couple (paired with either Condoleezza Rice or his pet goat). There are two problems. First, all political joking aside, President Bush is not a professional actor. He wasn’t even paid for his appearance in the movie. Shouldn’t that disqualify him as a Razzie candidate? Besides, his primary competition was Ben Affleck, who seriously deserved to “win” this year after his disastrous performance in Surviving Christmas. After cleaning up at last year’s Razzies for Gigli, “winning” this year would have made Affleck the Tom Hanks of the Razzies.

On an equally confusing note, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld won for Worst Supporting Actor. At the risk of repeating myself, Rumsfeld is not a professional actor, and he was not paid to be in Fahrenheit 9/11. His primary competition was Jon Voight, for his role in Baby Geniuses 2. Now tell me, honestly, who was more deserving?

Much less confusing, but no less undeserved (even for her) was Britney Spears’ Worst Supporting Actress Razzie for her appearance in — brace yourself — Fahrenheit 9/11. Spears has done paid acting work (such as it was) in the past, but not in this movie. She was making a comment in support of President Bush. Personally, I did not find her comment altogether insightful or groundbreaking, but how could those few seconds of screen time deserve a Razzie? She was up against Sharon Stone’s scenery-chewing performance in Catwoman; who was more deserving?

I’m starting to see a pattern here. I don’t know… is it just me, or do the folks over at the Razzies have a strong anti-Bush leaning? There’s nothing wrong with having a particular political viewpoint, but to allow it to overshadow a movie “awards” ceremony is just tacky, IMHO. Quite honestly, my enjoyment of the Razzies started to wane when Dungeons and Dragons wasn’t nominated for a single award in 2000. That movie should have been the one to beat in every category, and it wasn’t even nominated. Battlefield Earth, the overwhelming “winner,” belonged there, but the nominations have to make some sense.

Okay, enough ranting. I’ll wrap up with a little trivia about the real Oscars. Jamie Foxx, who won the Best Actor Oscar for his work in Ray, is only the second actor in history to be nominated for two acting Oscars in two different movies during the same year. (The first was Al Pacino in 1992.) Foxx is also only the third African-American male in history to win Best Actor. (The other two are Denzel Washington and Sidney Poitier.)



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5 Comments - Comments are closed.

  1. Yup, the political grandstanding from the Razzies guys has pretty much sucked the life out of the tradition. There were enough crappy movies and crappy actors that were ignored because someone had to get a cheap shot in.

    The Razzies have jumped the shark. Their relevance will be missed.

  2. Brian,

    Thanks for writing about that. It’s been at the back of my mind ever since the “nominations” were announced. The inclusion of Bush and Co. struct me as odd, but at the time I just thought they were being cute.

    As David commented, the Razzies have indeed jumped the shark and I think one of the reasons is [drumroll]: The Internet. I just hopped on over to their site and noticed that (for a fee) membership (and the ability to vote) is open to anyone with the click of a mouse. IMO when it was offline (and took more effort to join) they probably had a more qualified (for lack of a better term) membership.

    Despite arguments to the contrary, I think that anti-Bush folks are a lot more vocal online than pro-Bush people, and that many of those folks are happy to take any opportunity to slam him.

    Of course if Bush and Co. had never been on the list this wouldn’t even be an issue, so don’t think I’m holding those who run the thing harmless.

    What a waste of a great tradition and a way to marginalize themselves. :confused:


  3. I actually thought it was great that Bush was in there… considering that he made up most of 9/11. I thought all the other political inclusions were over the top.

    As John Wilson (founder of the Razzies) said, Bush was more nominated and won for his portrayal of a President than he was for his “work” in 9/11.

    Was that a politcal slam? Yup. But that’s what media does. When a Democrat is in the White House, the Democrats b**** and complain about how much the president gets blasted. When a Republican is in… same thing.

    Either way… the fun in the Razzies is the very fact that you shouldn’t take it seriously. brainless Bush-Bashers won’t have any problems with it, and mindless Bush-Acolytes will all hate it. But honestly… should it be any other way?

  4. John,

    I’ll grant you that if they just had Bush in there it would have been funny, but their sledgehammer approach to the other members of the administration was juvenile IMHO.