World Features

Oscars: List Of Famous Slice-of-Life Films That Earned A Nomination But Not A Win

Slice-of-life films Licorice Pizza and CODA are two of the contenders for Best Picture at the upcoming 94th edition of the Academy Awards, alongside The Power of the Dog.


While Paul Thomas Anderson’s Licorice Pizza is the story of a budding actor and a photographer’s assistant falling in love, in San Fernando Valley of 1973, Sian Heder’s CODA [Children of Deaf Adults] revolves around Emilia Jones’ character Ruby Rossi, who is the only hearing member of a deaf family.

Troy Kotsur became the first actor from the deaf community to win a SAG award in the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Film category, for his portrayal of Frank Rossi in CODA. He is also the first deaf male actor to earn an Oscar nomination.

It is to be noted that even though slice-of-films are the go-to genre films for the audience worldwide, they have been sidelined at the Oscars for years. The only exceptions are films like Tom HanksForrest Gump (1994), Moonlight (2016), and Chloe Zhao‘s Nomadland (2020), which are otherwise surpassed by biopics and historical dramas.

On that note, Silverscreen India thus, brings to you a list of slice-of-life films that have received nominations but have not won at the Oscars.

Call Me By Your Name (2017)

The Luca Guadagnino-directorial is a coming-of-age drama, led by Timothee Chalamet and Armie Hammer. Based on Andre Aciman’s novel by the same name, Call Me By Your Name revolves around a romantic relationship between 17-year-old Elio (Chalamet) and 24-year-old Oliver. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and was screened at the Berlinale as well as the Toronto International Film Festival, in 2017. The film had garnered Oscar nominations for the categories of Best Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay, and went on to win in the latter. It lost the Best Picture award to Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy film The Shape of Water.


Lady Bird (2017)

The film marked Greta Gerwig’s solo directorial debut, and looks into the life of a high school student and her strained relationship with her mother. Lady Bird features actors Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Melcalf, Timothee Chalamet, and Tracy Letts, among others. It premiered at the Telluride Film Festival and earned five nominations at the Oscars, namely, for Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Director, but won in none of the categories.


Boyhood (2014)

Directed by Richard Linklater, Boyhood depicts the childhood and adolescence of Mason Evans Junior from ages six to eighteen, as he grows up in Texas with divorced parents. The film’s cast includes Patricia Arquette, Ellar Coltrane, Lorelei Linklater, and Ethan Hawke in prominent roles. Boyhood premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, and went on to earn Linklater the Silver Bear for Best Director at the Berlin International Film Festival. Apart from Best Picture, the film garnered nominations in five categories, namely, for direction, supporting actor and actress, editing, and original screenplay. Arquette was the only one to win an Oscar, while the film lost the rest to Birdman and Whiplash.


Lost in Translation (2003)

Headlined by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, the Sofia Coppola-directorial follows the story of Bob Harris (Murray), who is dealing with a midlife crisis, and the events that follow after he meets and befriends Charlotte (Johansson) in Tokyo, Japan. Coppola went on to earn an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay and a nomination for direction, while Murray got nominated in the Best Actor category. The film lost the Best Picture bid to the fantasy film The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.


Minari (2020)

The Lee Isaac Chung-directorial was one of the most talked about films in the international feature film category across award functions. Featuring actors Steven Yeun, Han Ye-ri, Alan Kim, Noel Kate Cho, Young Yuh-Jung, and Will Patton in prominent roles, Minari is an American drama film about the relocation of a Korean family to the US during the 1980s, to live the ‘American Dream’. It earned six nominations at the 2021 Oscars, namely, for Best Picture, direction, original score, original screenplay, Best Actor for Yeun, and Best Supporting Actress for Youn, which she won and became the first-ever Korean actor to achieve the feat.


Manchester by the Sea (2016)

Directed by Kenneth Lonergan, the film features actor Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler, and Lucas Hedges. The story revolves around an asocial janitor named Lee Chandler (Affleck), who is entrusted with the care of his teenage nephew Patrick (Hedges), after the death of his brother. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and was nominated in six categories at the Oscars, including for Best Picture. It won Affleck the Best Actor award, and earned an Oscar for original screenplay.


The Kids Are All Right (2010)

The Kids Are All Right is directed by Lisa Cholodenko and looks into the married life of a lesbian couple, played by Annette Bening and Julianne Moore, who raise two teenage children together. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and bagged four Oscar nominations including for Best Picture, but lost to Tom Hooper’s The King’s Speech, in that category.