Alum film ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ leads with 11 Oscar nominations

By Ryan Yau, Living Arts Co-Editor

Tuesday’s announcement of this year’s Academy Awards nominations came as an impressive feat for the Emerson film community.

Emerson alums Daniel Kwan ‘10 and Daniel Scheinert ‘09 continue their sensational awards season run for their multiversal crowd-pleaser “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” Including a Best Achievement in Directing nod, the movie received 11 nominations in total—more than any other this Oscars season.

The movie centers Evelyn, played by Michelle Yeoh, a woman who runs a laundromat with her husband Waymond, played by Ke Huy Quan. Inexplicably, she is thrust into an adventure across parallel universes by a parallel version of Waymond, who tells her only she can save the multiverse from its destruction.

The duo—known collectively as “the Daniels”—was recognized in two other categories: Best Original Screenplay and Best Motion Picture of the Year.

For VMA students and the Emerson community, the prospect of a movie helmed by two Emersonians taking home the Academy’s most prestigious award is exciting—and reasonably likely. Many industry publications, such as Variety and Entertainment Weekly, currently list “Everything Everywhere All at Once” as the frontrunner for Best Picture.

As the Best Picture award has been historically defined by upsets, however, it may be hard to make definitive predictions. The movie also faces strong competition from Stephen Spielberg’s “The Fabelmans” and Martin McDonagh’s “The Banshees of Inisherin,” which similarly have the traits of movies typically favored by the Academy.

Lead Michelle Yeoh was nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role. This makes her the first Asian-identifying Best Actress nominee in Oscars history.

The movie’s other nominations include Ke Huy Quan for Best Supporting Actor, Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu for Best Supporting Actress, Paul Rogers for Best Editing, Shirley Kurata for Best Costume Design, Son Lux for Best Original Score, and David Byrne, Mitski, and Son Lux’s “This is a Life” for Best Original Song.

Even the Daniels seem surprised by their movie’s continual success. On their shared Twitter account, they posted a gif from the movie with subtitles reading: “What is happening?”

“Everything Everywhere All at Once” won Critics Choice, Boston Society of Film Critics, and Chicago Film Critics Association awards, and earned nominations for the Golden Globes, the British Academy Film Awards, and the Screen Actors Guild.

Separately, alum Alexandra Milchan ‘94 was also recognized as a producer for “Tár,” which was nominated for six awards, including Best Picture. “Tár” portraits the fictionally world-renowned composer Lydia Tár, played by Cate Blanchett, and the downward spiral of her career.