In a rare move, the Broadcast Film Critics Association has amended its listing of nominees for the Critics’ Choice Awards in the category of Best Picture of the Year for 2015.  The body had previously selected 10 movies from 2015 which it considered the best of the best, but ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ was not made available to view by voters before its release this past weekend.  But now that those critics have seen the movie, along with the rest of fandom, they held a special referendum to have ‘The Force Awakens’ added to its list.  Sadly, because of the fact that Disney did not hold early screenings for critics (to prevent piracy), this will be the only category in which the film will be considered.

‘The Force Awakens’ joins previously announced nominees:

The Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant

This is a real honor for what many consider a popcorn flick, but it isn’t unprecedented.  A similar override was employed for the Tom Hanks film ‘Castaway’ way back in 2000.

Does this bode well for ‘The Force Awakens’ in other upcoming awards?  It may.  Even though no one had seen it, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (a.k.a. the Academy Awards a.k.a. The Oscars) had already placed this movie on the short list for Best Visual Effects.  Typically, science fiction movies can only hope to score in this sort of technical category.  But once in a while, a big budget, FX-heavy flick actually transcends its “humble” fan base and garners critical acclaim.

What might actually be problematic for ‘Star Wars’ (MAYBE) is that there are already two such popular, genre films already in the running: ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ and ‘The Martian’.  ‘Mad Max’ in particular was on quite a role with critics… but that was before ‘The Force Awakens’ arrived.  ‘Mad Max’ was already a dark horse in such esteemed company.  But the juggernaut that is ‘Star Wars’ may have just snuffed any chance for the post-apocalyptic adventure to score any major kudos this year.

The 21st Annual Critics’ Choice Awards will be presented on January 17 at 8 pm EST on A&E.

Do you think ‘Star Wars’ stands a chance in such serious company?

Source: Entertainment Weekly