Earlier this week, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced rule changes that included a controversial new category: outstanding achievement in popular film. In essence, it seems that movies like blockbuster summer flicks and popcorn comedies will have a better chance at Oscar gold than ever before. And that’s news that seems to be making Mark Wahlberg pretty pumped.
The 47-year-old actor has 45 cinematic roles under his belt, but was only nominated for an Oscar once for his supporting role in The Departed. (He also has a nod as a producer for The Fighter.) At the premiere for his latest action-thriller, Mile 22, the actor told Variety, “Maybe if they’d had the category before, we’d have won a couple of them.”
He added, still in uncomfortable third-person,
“We’ve had some really commercially successful films that we think certainly warranted that kind of notoriety. We make films that we want people to enjoy and if we get those kind of accolades, fantastic. If not, we make the movies for audiences to enjoy… There are a lot of great films out there that happen to be very popular and haven’t been recognized that probably deserve the recognition.”
Wahlberg’s Mile 22 co-star and MMA star Ronda Rousey also thinks she’s got a shot at a statue with the new category. “Finally, I’m in the running for an Academy Award,” she said. “I’m gunning for the outstanding achievement in popular film [award]. You heard it now. Vote for me.”