A+ but no Oscar for Hugh Jackman in ‘Bad Education’

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A+ but no Oscar for Hugh Jackman in ‘Bad Education’

It’s a sign of the times that the pinnacle of the actor’s storied career will never by recognised by the Academy

Kevin Kriedemann

The times they are a-changin. Bad Education was the biggest sale of last year’s Toronto International Film Festival and features Hugh Jackman’s best-ever performance, but will never screen in cinemas, and isn’t eligible for Oscars even after the Academy changed the rules this year. Instead, the film chose to stream first on HBO (and a week later on Showmax in SA) – a decision Variety describes as “a sign of the future ... a game-changer, a cutting-edge example — or maybe you could call it a casualty — of the shifting sands of movie distribution”, where great movies will compete “not for the Oscars but for the Emmys”. 

Bad Education is based on the real-life scandal that went down at writer Mike Makowsky’s high school, where the single largest public school embezzlement scheme in American history was uncovered – by a student journalist, no less. What’s more, as the movie tells it, she was encouraged in her investigation by the school supervisor, a dedicated and highly respected educator, and the very man her article would ultimately land behind bars.

In the lead role of charismatic school supervisor Dr Frank Tassone is Hugh Jackman (The Greatest Showman, Les Misérables, X-Men). Allison Janney (I, Tonya, Mom, The West Wing) and Ray Romano (The Irishman, Everybody Loves Raymond) co-star. The cast also includes Alex Wolff (Hereditary), Geraldine Viswanathan (Miracle Workers) and Kathrine Narducci (The Irishman, Godfather of Harlem). ..

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