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Do Comedies Get Short Shrift at the Oscars?

On the eve of tomorrow's Oscar nominations, some of the finest minds in the country have declared something that even some of us without Ph.D.s have long suspected: Actors in dramas are more likely to get Oscar nominations than actors in comedies. The joint Harvard-UCLA study found that when a film was classified as a drama by IMDb, its actors were nine times more likely to receive an Oscar nomination than actors in other types of films.

That study might be a little skewed — IMDb calls Fargo a drama, for instance, and even Little Miss Sunshine is listed as both a comedy and a drama. But even so, it does seem harder for comedies to really break through at the Oscars. Are the comedies being unfairly ignored? Or is dramatic work just more award-worthy?


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