The Oscars have long served as the holy grail of celebrity stardom, with creatives building whole careers off the likes of even one nomination.
As this year’s ceremony promoted the work of progressive filmmaking standards, talents of both new and old were graced with critical approval. With the academy giving the 2022 hit “Everything Everywhere All at Once” a record-breaking 11 nominations, seven of which the film won, many first-time nominees and eventual winners were now faced with an onslaught of newfound status.
Amidst a wave of speech performing, red carpet walking, and for Ke Huy Quan — winner of the best-supporting actor category — mass-marketed tear-jerking, many of these cinema starlets instead made time for what lay ahead. Looking past the glitz and glamor of showtime Hollywood, it was the pursuit of future projects that would ultimately win the night for stars alike. For the industry’s newest comeback story in Brendan Fraser, this mindset was no different.
Making his humble return to the tower of mainstream fandom, Fraser’s recent success in the "best actor" category offers a flashy mantlepiece to his decorum of promising upcoming projects. As reported on Deadline back in August 2021, Fraser is set to star in Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon” where he will play a supporting role to the leads of Leonardo DiCaprio, Jesse Plemons, and Robert De Niro.
With the film set to release later this year, Fraser will also get a second opportunity to stretch his screen-supporting legs in an upcoming comedy film titled “Brothers.” Directed by Max Barbakow, the film will see him act alongside its supposed sibling duo of Josh Brolin and Peter Dinklage. Tabbing both projects almost an entire year prior to the release of his award-winning performance in Darren Aronofsky’s “The Whale,” Fraser’s recent success may shimmer its way into even further work. In time, these additions may secure a resounding return to the top, rather than a flash of achievement that fades as quickly as it appeared.
Although losing out to Fraser for best actor, the young blood of Hollywood, Austin Butler and Paul Mescal, used their bids for the award as a job campaign.While competing for the throne, they used the awards race as a springboard to new opportunities that could bring them back into award contention in the ensuing years.
As reported on IndieWire, Butler is set to play Feyd-Rautha in Dennis Villeneuve’s “Dune: Part Two,” a staple character of the Dune universe that has only previously been iterated on the big screen one time, having been played by Sting in the 1984 adaptation of the novel. On top of this sci-fi deliverance, Butler’s leading man persona seems worthy of a repeat performance. Apple TV’s upcoming war drama miniseries “Masters of the Air” will see him lead a cast of talented actors in Barry Keoghan and Callum Turner. It’d be fair to note that Keoghan also received a best supporting actor nomination in this year’s Oscar race for his work in Martin McDonough’s “Banshees of Inisherin.”
A fellow Irish native to the likes of Keoghan, it’s Mescal who seems eager to check off each vacant box of genre storytelling with his upcoming projects.. As mentioned in an additional IndieWire piece, his most recent film is a musical drama titled “Carmen” which will be released in France on June 14 of this year. From there, he is set to lead a dystopian drama in “Foe,” a fantasy drama in “Strangers,” a musical comedy in “Merrily We Roll Along,” a thriller in “The End of Getting Lost,” a historical drama in “The History of Sound,” an action film in “A Spy by Nature,” and a return to the world of roman brutality in Ridley Scott’s “Gladiator 2.”
Following the same pretext of personal craft building as that of Fraser, Butler and Mescal, almost everyone involved with 2022’s best picture winner, “Everything Everywhere All at Once” took note of the pedestal they rested on. Interdimensional travel, googly eyes and a Chinese immigrant family found in the middle of it all, it’s the martial arts master in Michelle Yeoh who seemed to notice first.
Yeoh, the film’s lead and winner of the best actress category, is set to play a more supplementary role in her coming projects. According to The New York Times, Yeoh will appear in the big-screen rendition of the musical “Wicked,”, the third film in the “Avatar” series, the third installment of Kenneth Branagh’s mystery movie series in “A Haunting in Venice,” and most recently in a return to autobot galore in “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts,” which is set to release this June.
Fellow winners and long-fledged legends of the filmscape, Jamie Lee Curtis and Ke Huy Quan will look towards quieter roads ahead than that of their multiversal counterparts, while keeping their fingers on the pulse of public appreciation.
In The Washington Post, a redux on Curtis and her career pointed toward an involvement with the upcoming project "Borderlands," a live action adaption from the video game of the same name. Layered atop a bed of multimedia translation, a sequel to Curtis’s 2003 hit “Freaky Friday” has also gained some traction in recent months.
For Quan, a story in Entertainment Weekly made mention of a second collaboration with his on-screen wife Michelle Yeoh, with the two reuniting in the Disney+ series “American Born Chinese.” In line with followers of the Mickey Mouse agenda, the Russo brothers, directors of “Avengers: Infinity War” and Endgame," will also use Quan’s talents in their upcoming film “The Electric State.”
A trinity of cult movie legends, Yeoh, Curtis, and Quan continue to build on their already icon-embedded careers. However, for the youthful flair of 2022’s love baby of hotdog fingers and fanny pack kung fu, it’s the work of a directing duo and their young star that gave a modern edge to “Everything Everywhere All at Once.”
Akin to the moves of Yeoh and Quan, the directorial duo in Daniel’s will be taking a brief step into the corporate pipeline, having directed one episode for Disney’s upcoming Star Wars series, “Skeleton Crew,” as reported by The Hollywood Reporter. A piece on Deadline noted an even larger deal made with Universal, with the two signing a five-year pact with the company back in August.
Having played both antagonist and conflicted daughter in the 2022 hit, actress Stephanie Hsu and her upcoming comedy film “Joy Ride” are set to hit theaters this June. Out of all the other talents listed, the world will have to endure a drought of Hsu-centered media, as her following project is David Leitch’s “The Fall Guy,” an action thriller set to drop in March of next year.
All distinct in their styles, each star was pulled towards the Oscars by their individuality, placing their stake as pillars of the industry. In making it back to this commemoration of class, steps will have to be taken. Whether it’s a small-budget indie film or a box office goliath, these talents will continue to put their skills to the test. The bright side for them, they all seem to love what they do for a living, as does the rest of the world in watching them do it.
Source Photo: Jeff Kravitz/ FILMMAGIC
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