The Golden Raspberry Awards, honoring the worst in big-budget filmmaking and presented the day before the Academy Awards, are a sly satire of the self-congratulatory film industry, especially evident on the rare occasion when the two nights' nominees overlap, as they did this year, thanks to Melissa McCarthy's wide-ranging oeuvre. Nominated for her roles in both The Happytime Murders and Life of the Party at the 2019 Razzies, McCarthy "won" Worst Actress on Saturday, and could make it a topsy-turvy, back-to-back weekend if she also takes home Best Actress for her work in Can You Ever Forgive Me? at the Oscars on Sunday.
In a way, it's a testament to her versatility and willingness to take risks. Not many actresses can claim they led a farcical campus comedy, bizarre puppet noir, and scammer biopic all in quick succession, and all to very mixed reactions.
As The Hollywood Reporter notes, this isn't the first time that a star has received these career best and career worst nods at the same time. Jack Nicholson, Alec Baldwin, Sandra Bullock, and Eddie Redmayne have all been nominated for both Razzie and Oscar awards in the same year. Bullock is the only one to have actually won both awards back-to-back: In 2010, she won the Razzie for All About Steve and then, just a day later, the Oscar for The Blind Side.
The Razzies have been an annual tradition for nearly 40 years. And while at first they might seem like an unnecessarily mean tradition—do we really need a day dedicated to making fun of people's hard work?—there's a little more to it than that. For starters, they actually aren't about the art, at all. The awards go to actors who are big, big stars and whose careers won't be made or broken by the nomination, even if it is a little embarrassing (it's definitely, as they say, "punching up"). And by late February, aren't we all a little sick of watching the rich and famous hand one another trophies? Honoring the best in entertainment is fun, for sure, but let's not pretend that everything Hollywood touches turns to gold.
The Razzies are a good-natured break from the award season onslaught, and the nominations are, actually, kind of smart! For example: Eligible because he appeared in two documentaries in the last year, President Donald Trump won the award for Worst Screen Couple at this year's Razzies. No, not him and Melania—the winners were "Donald J. Trump and his self-perpetuating pettiness," per CNN.
We bet McCarthy, one of the funniest stars on the planet, can take the joke. And hopefully, on Sunday, the Oscar.