As Hollywood’s unofficial anti-Oscars, the Golden Raspberry Awards celebrate the best of the worst (or, rather… the worst of the worst) of cinema each year. The nominations for 2020 are now out, and they’re full of plenty of obvious choices. But it may come as a surprise that while so-bad-it-went-viral Cats came out ahead with the most Razzie nods, it shares that not-so-illustrious accomplishment with two other films.
It’s sadly ironic that Cats leads the Razzies pack this year, because at one point, Universal Pictures somehow believed it could be an Oscar contender. Tom Hooper’s disastrously ill-fated adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s beloved musical received eight Razzie nominations: Worst Picture, Worst Actress (Francesca Hayward), Worst Supporting Actor (James Corden), Worst Director (Tom Hooper), and Worst Screenplay (Lee Hall, Tom Hooper). It also scored double nods in two categories. Both Judi Dench and Rebel Wilson are Razzie nominees for Worst Supporting Actress. And for Worst Screen Combo, Cats is nominated for both Any Two Half-Feline/Half-Human Hairballs, and Jason Derulo & His CGI-Neutered Bulge.
While the Golden Raspberry Awards nomination committee definitely did not hold back on contempt for Cats, it showed an equal disdain for the critically panned A Madea Family Funeral. Tyler Perry actually comes out on top as the most nominated person for this year’s Razzies. His name comes up in five separate categories: Worst Actress, Worst Screenplay, Worst Screen Combo (for himself and himself -- ouch), and double nods for Worst Supporting Actor. A Madea Family Funeral is also nominated for Worst Picture, Worst Supporting Actress (Cassi Davis), and Worst Remake, Rip-Off or Sequel.
Then there’s Rambo: First Blood, which scored its own impressive eight Razzie nods. It, too, is nominated for Worst Picture, Worst Actor (Sylvester Stallone), Worst Supporting Actress (Fenessa Pineda), Worst Director (Adrian Grunberg), Worst Screenplay (Matthew Cirulnick, Sylvester Stallone) and Worst Remake, Rip-Off or Sequel. It was also recognized for Worst Screen Combo (Sylvester Stallone & His Impotent Rage), and Worst Reckless Disregard for Human Life and Public Property.
In an industry full of award shows that can feel a bit redundant, you have to hand it to the Golden Raspberry Awards for at the very least creating some unique accolades. Though these categories can definitely come off as a bit cruel, there is one truly kind award up for grabs -- the Razzie Redeemer Award, which honors previously recognized actors who gave great performances. In 2020, Eddie Murphy, Keanu Reeves, Adam Sandler, Jennifer Lopez, and Will Smith are nominated.
That category alone goes to show that while the Razzies aren’t exactly what most Hollywood players dreamed about when they practiced giving award speeches in their mirrors, they usually don’t signal the end of anyone’s career. Some actors have even happily accepted the dishonor of a Razzie with good humor. The people who brought us Cats, A Madea Family Funeral, and Rambo: Last Blood will likely all live on to make more movies -- that are hopefully a little bit better.