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An Oscar for Leonardo DiCaprio in The Wolf of Wall Street.

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To all members of the Academy,

The prestige, associated with the Oscar ceremony and the rewards awarded each year, has become undeniable. History, though, has sometimes demonstrated that the Academy’s decisions were not necessarily the most relevant artistically speaking. It has been known for some time now that the fateful voting process can be subjected to massive lobbying campaigns during which studios, producers and distributors leverage their influence to weigh in on the scale in favour of a given movie. Anyone would agree that such methods prevent the votes from being as impartial as possible, and can consequently lead to questionable results.

Let us ask, for instance, for what reason directors such as Stanley Kubrick or Alfred Hitchcock were never awarded with an Oscar? Similarly, it has become difficult to understand why, with hindsight, a film such as Kramer vs. Kramer would be preferred to Apocalypse Now, or Ordinary People to Elephant Man and Raging Bull, or why such landmark films as The Thin Red Line and Saving Private Ryan would lose the Oscar to Shakespeare in Love.

As the most prestigious award a movie can receive, shouldn’t the Oscar be given to works of art based on their impact on the film industry and the quality of the work that went into them? Wouldn’t you agree that when the best nominee of a category – the one whose talent will undoubtedly be celebrated for decades to come – is not ultimately recognized as such, the award risks losing its relevance? It is with such concerns at heart that we ask of you to acknowledge the exceptional performance given by Leonardo DiCaprio in The Wolf of Wall Street.

Often called “the best actor of his generation”, he has proven worthy of this title time and again, including this past year, with his excellent work in Django Unchained and The Great Gatsby. In The Wolf of Wall Street, however, he reached a whole new level of acting, proving capable of taking down herds of hungry traders by the sheer power of his predatory charisma, before going into a 10 minutes long trance to deliver an insane physical performance in the following scene. Surely, his future is among the brightest in Hollywood, but this particular film will be remembered as a highlight of his career, the one time when he transcended the boundaries of his role and sprang to life like none other in front of the camera.

We assure you that we have the utmost respect for the other actors who will most likely be nominated. Yet be it Chiwetei Ejiofor in 12 Years a Slave, Christian Bale in American Hustle, or McConaughey in Dallas Buyers Club, none of them have come close to competing with DiCaprio’s possessed performance. Rest assured these very same actors would agree on the quality of his work in this role, which he brilliantly used to illustrate the decadence of a system long glorified by a part on the United States’ society before it literally blew up in their faces.

Hence our plea that DiCaprio’s fate should be different than Martin Scorsese’s, who had to wait for years before being rewarded for one of his most minor movies. Do not wait. Do not let the Oscar become some kind of mandatory reward for the end of his career because he was never given one when it was rightly due.

Reward him while he truly deserves it more than anyone else.

Reward him for The Wolf of Wall Street.



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