Godzilla Minus One Is The Only Oscar Win That Matters

By Christopher Isaac | Published

If you are anything like me, you probably assumed that the Godzilla movies had already long ago been nominated for, and even won, all kinds of awards. So as the latest award season approached, I was shocked to hear that prior to Godzilla Minus One, a Godzilla film had never even received a single nomination for an Oscar at the Academy Awards.

And with the movie’s win in the category of Best Visual Effects, it also marks the first time a Japanese movie has ever won in that category as well.

Godzilla Minus One – Winner

It’s stunning that a character as universally known as Godzilla would have gone that long without even a nomination. Let’s not mince words—there are definitely some pretty bad Godzilla movies out there.

But when they are good, they are such a visual spectacle. And as CGI has advanced, Godzilla and his monster adversaries have really become a technological showcase for how advanced new techniques have become. It is insane to think it took until Godzilla Minus One for that to be recognized.

Godzilla For Decades And Decades

To be clear on how big of a historical moment this is, Godzilla movies first started coming out 70 years ago. In that timespan, 38 Godzilla movies have been released.

I definitely cannot claim to be one of the fans who has seen them all, but I have seen enough to know the giant lizard can look pretty great.

It really does beg the question: What took so long for this to happen? But if we had to wait, at least it was worth it since the award went to a movie as solid all around as Godzilla Minus One.

Best Visual Effects

And the surprises keep on coming when we learn that Godzilla Minus One is only the second time that a director has won the award for Best Visual Effects.

Apparently it is very uncommon for directors to also supervise that category of a movie, but Godzilla Minus One director Takashi Yamazaki did it.

And the first director to achieve this feat? A little director you may have heard of named Stanley Kubrick! Kubrick very understandably won the award for his work on 2001: A Space Odyssey. That really puts Yamazaki in some elite company.

Breaking Through

godzilla minus one

Maybe this is not common, but one of the most exciting things about the Academy Awards is watching and rooting for the nominees who will break a record or become firsts in their category. For instance, think back to when Leonardo DiCaprio finally broke his drought of never winning Best Actor by finally winning for The Revenant.

Rooting For The Win

godzilla minus one

Hearing how historically significant Godzilla Minus One could be, many were definitely rooting for it to win going into the award season. Sure, it had already made history just by being nominated, but with how long it took a Godzilla movie or a Japanese movie to get nominated in this category, who knows when it might happen again? This felt like a now-or-never moment.

Recognition For Godzilla Minus One

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The irony is certainly not lost on us that a giant monster known for destroying everything has now just created so much history that will be remembered for years to come.

Maybe Godzilla is not such a bad guy after all, regardless of how Godzilla Minus One depicts him. If you had to wait 70 years for recognition for your work, you would probably be grumpy and knock down some buildings, too.