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Sequels, spinoffs, and remakes are Hollywood’s bread and butter but do this year’s crop of Academy Award nominees offer up any opportunities for franchise-building? We apply our completely subjective methods of analysis to eight films in an effort to predict whether or not a part two is in the cards for any of the Best Picture contenders in competition at the 2016 Oscars. Here are our findings:
A second trip into space for Matt Damon’s Martian character would definitely get us to the theatre. The Saoirse Ronan-starring romance Brooklyn, however, is a far more likely candidate for a remake than a sequel. How can Hollywood resist the low-hanging fruit that is a recycled love story in which the protagonist is forced to choose between two men on opposite sides of the ocean? The answer: they can’t.
Point: The Martian
Spotlight is the true story of a group of reporters at the Boston Globe who break the news of the Catholic Church’s coverup of rampant child abuse among their ranks. Let’s hope that terrible scandal never gets a sequel.
Winner by default: Room
A squad of finance hotshots taking on the big US banks versus an insurance law hotshot taking on the USSR: the choice between a sequel to the US housing crisis and another Cold War is like choosing between two terrible dates that swiped right on your Tinder profile.
Point: Neither. We choose us.
Two brutal journeys across unforgiving landscapes, one cold, one sweltering. Two heroes with a mission. Two scores to settle. Two Tom Hardys. With the way things turn out for Leonardo DiCaprio’s character in The Revenant, the story is better suited to a prequel that a sequel. When it comes to Fury Road however, we’d like nothing more than to see Charlize Theron suit up as Imperator Furiosa again.
Point: Mad Max: Fury Road
It’s fitting that these two ultimate survivors face off in our final round: the woman who bested Immortan Joe versus the guy who (technically) colonized Mars. Matt Damon charmed us, made us laugh, and made us cry, okay sob, happy tears when he made it back to Earth—how could we stand the suspense of another space mission? Charlize Theron on the other hand, well, we’d love to see her kick War Boy butt again. Besides, Mad Max already has a well-established pedigree when it comes to sequels.
And the award goes to: Mad Max: Fury Road