We know for Potter-heads across the nation the Academy Awards are a sore subject. Twi-hards have been left in the cold by the Academy on an even larger scale, not even scoring a single nomination over a four-film span. The Hunger Games has garnered comparisons to both Twilight and Harry Potter, but there are many factors that will separate it from the pack on Oscar night.

Keep in mind, we’re not predicting a Hunger Games sweep at next years Oscars. What follows are simply things to consider when forming your (super) early prediction list.

5)It’s Oscar-friendly

True, a March release date isn’t exactly Oscar-friendly (don’t forget, The Hurt Locker had an original March release date and Silence of the Lambs had a late February release), but the cast, director and subject matter are.

Jennifer Lawrence has already gained recognition with the Academy for her work in Winter’s Bone, and the Academy even approached her to read the nominees for this year’s awards. Whether or not the voting Academy thinks you’re a mensch goes a mile and a half towards Oscar gold, so having Lawrence leading the way in what has already been described as an Oscar-worthy role has put The Hunger Games on the Academy’s radar. Sure, past Oscar glory is no guarantee of future Oscar glory—the Harry Potter films are proof enough of that—but combined with the right source material, it can make all the difference on a nomination board.

This is a film that has chosen a tone (one that is heavily alluded to in the novels) and stuck with it. The Harry Potter films chose to be produced as popcorn films, which isn’t a bad thing since it helps to maintain a wider sense of appeal, but it impacts the level of artistry that the Academy usually looks for.

The Hunger Games film on the other hand is dark, serious, political and everything else that can be defined as Oscar bait. It has also been described as “intellectually challenging” by reviewers, and if there’s something the Academy likes to award, it’s those thinkin’ movies.

4)It has earned critical/audience acclaim

The film is barely out of the gate (at the time of the publication of this article, midnight is still a few hours away), and critics are already getting into the habit of calling The Hunger Games “the next big thing.” Fans of course have had the leg up on the world with this news, but they seem just as adamant to express their rabid enthusiasm for the film adaptation. Lucky fans that have already logged the film into their memory banks have claimed full satisfaction.

Again, Harry Potter is an excellent example of fan enthusiasm simply not being enough to sway the Academy’s opinion, but this is a different matter entirely. We, as fans, have to separate ourselves from our fandom kingdom and think about the general public. For non-readers, the Harry Potter series of films had the potential to be wildly confusing.

It takes a lot to please fans, general audiences and critics alike, but The Hunger Games seems to have located that sweet spot between pleasing the fans and creating a legitimately awesome experience. It has found a way to seem relevant to critics that only seem to enjoy “serious” fare and remain enjoyable to the casual watcher. It’s this tightrope walk between individual artistry and faithfulness to the source material that keeps it in the game.

3)It isn’t Harry Potter and it isn’t half a film
Yeah, those are some strong words up there, but I stand by them. Let me tell you why.

Before you mash your angry hands to the keyboard in a hateful fashion, consider this. Have you ever talked about Harry Potter to someone who has never read it? Have you ever been on the opposite end of that conversation?

The story of Harry Potter is expansive, complex, emotional and epic, but it hides under ridiculous words like “Hogwarts” and “Muggles.” Serious fans have probably forgotten how ridiculous those words sound, but to an outside audience that hasn’t taken the time to acclimate themselves to Harry’s world, words like those can be pretty polarizing.

In a few words, Harry Potter SOUNDS ridiculous, and having exposure to Harry’s world purely through the films is a poor substitute for the full experience. When it comes down to it, Harry Potter must seem like a strange phenomenon to the uninitiated. It’s hard to explain in a sentence without saying a word like “Voldemort” or “Horcruxes.”

The Hunger Games has a tight synopsis, has mass brutal appeal and has found a way to market itself in an attractive way without being overly obscene. Generally, it’s contained films like these that the Academy likes to bestow praise upon, and it will fare even better if the film ends up making more money than Deathly Hallows and Breaking Dawn combined.

It all just comes down to the idea that Harry Potter isn’t the basis on which all book-to-film movie franchises should be based. It was its own phenomenon with its own quirks, but it was ultimately its tone that moved Academy voters against it. This is a drastically different movie, and not only that, but it also doesn’t have a tacky “Part 2” glued onto the end of the title.

2)It’s culturally relevant

There are lots of potential meanings for the phrase “cultural relevance”, but from the moment that The Hunger Games was introduced, its themes have been deemed as alarmingly reminiscent of former science fiction that has since turned into science fact. We’ve even been sent several articles about how The Hunger Games is where the world is heading.

It’s pretty hard to ignore this cautionary tale about the dangers of totalitarian government, corruption, and societal voyeurism and critics have already taken notice. It’s a fresh and well-timed tale that will hit people directly in their brain box. When films do this, the Academy normally takes notice and at least gives further consideration simply for having the guts to take audiences there.

The Academy likes to reward studios for taking a chance, and there’s no doubt that Lionsgate took a chance on this brutal fight to the death. It is showing audiences something that’s hard to see, but everyone still wants to watch it.

It has that level of morbid intrigue that is usually reserved for horror films, but it has chosen to tell it in an intriguing post-modern political wasteland. Although Harry Potter had a lot to say on the subject of politics and corruption, The Hunger Games has taken it a step further by showing the aftermath of the end instead of how the end was narrowly avoided.

1)It works as a stand-alone film

We’ve discussed how Harry Potter suffered a confused adaptation process that began before the source material even ended, and it proved to have an unfortunate impact on the general movie watching public that hadn’t even held the books in their hands.

The difference here is that Harry Potter works best as a book series while The Hunger Games (as some critics have already suggested) was ripe for film adaptation. It’s visual, visceral, and even structured the exact same way that films are. Those that have read the book can agree that it reads like a very in-depth treatment for a film. One could actually even argue that the material is better suited for film, but then we would miss reading all of Katniss’s thoughts.

Director Gary Ross also ultimately made the decision to take a step away from the book series while developing the film. He took out things that didn’t work, added scenes that would help the overall clarity of the film, and made sure that The Hunger Games worked as a film rather than as a companion to the book. It’s ultimately this distinct and graceful medium shift that separates The Hunger Games from the pack and gives it a better chance of getting some golden love at the Oscars next year.

What do you think? Does The Hunger Games stand a chance at next year’s Oscars? Will it rack up that coveted Best Picture nomination? What other nominations could it score?

With Captain America: Civil War coming to theaters this week in the U.S., the Russo brothers are teasing their plans for Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 and Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2!

In an interview with Uproxx, the Russo brothers revealed that they believe that the current titles for the next Avengers films are misleading. Joe Russo stated, “The movies are two very different movies.” However, the current title makes it feel as though it’s the same story just split into two different films. It looks like that’s not what they’re going for, though.

“The intention is we will change it, we just haven’t come up with the titles yet. But, yes, we will change it. And, yes, that is a scoop: we will retitle them,” Joe Russo went on to say in the interview. Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 is currently scheduled for release on May 4, 2018 so it may be quite a while before we learn what the new title is. Thanos will be serving as the main antagonist in both of the films, with the conflict revolving around the Infinity Stones.

Before we even get to Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1, Marvel still has several movies to release. Including, Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok, and Black Panther.

Marvel recently pulled Inhumans from their upcoming Phase Three slate. It was supposed to be released July 12, 2019 after the release of Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2. It’s still unclear whether the film is cancelled entirely or if it is simply being pushed back.

Are you glad to hear ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ will be retitled?

Cami O’Connell has always been wise beyond her years and station on The Originals, and we will carry her most important words with us for a long time to come.

Cami O’Connell may not have survived Lucien’s bite on The Originals season 3, episode 19, but her words and wisdom will never be forgotten. She helped Klaus find peace and goodness in the world, she showed Davina that she is powerful enough to make her own destiny, and she constantly reminded everyone on that show that rising above one’s circumstances and being a good person is completely possible, even in the supernatural world.

Thinking back to all the incredible moments we had with Cami over the three seasons she was a part of The Originals, we tried to find a worthy enough way to pay our respects to her character. She was constantly dishing out incredible advice and knowledge, some of which is applicable to the world at large. Here are a few of our very favorite Cami quotes:

‘The Originals’ season 1, episode 4, ‘Girl in New Orleans’

“People are not awful. They want to be good. Something makes them bad, makes them snap. There are always signs. Symptoms before someone has a psychotic break.”

Cami The Originals season 1 episode 4 Girl in New Orleans edit

‘The Originals’ season 1, episode 8, ‘The River in Reverse’

“You are the architect of your own happiness.”

Cami The Originals season 1 episode 8 The River in Reverse edit

‘The Originals’ season 1, episode 16, ‘Farewell to Storyville’

“No one can control you unless you let them.”

Cami The Originals season 1 episode 16 Farewell to Storyville edit

‘The Originals’ season 2, episode 4, ‘Live and Let Die’

“This is a city of death, fires, floods. To say nothing of the violence we do to each other. We may laissez les bon temps rouler, but really we’ve turned life into one big party to distract ourselves from a single, unavoidable truth: We’re all going to die.”

Cami The Originals season 2 episode 4 Live and Let Die

“There’s more to life than the pain they made you feel. A cold beer, a slow song, a good friend. There are good things, Klaus, and you need to see that, too. There’s no real peace in revenge.”

‘The Originals’ season 2, episode 6, ‘Wheel Inside the Wheel’

“You know, sometimes I ask myself why I let people like Klaus into my life. I have this destructive pattern. I’m always drawn to the bad boys. Maybe deep down, I feel like that’s what I deserve.”

Cami The Originals season 2 episode 6 edit

‘The Originals’ season 3, episode 19 ‘No More Heartbreaks’

“I was never naive enough to think that I was your light, but there is light in you. All that anger, the cycle of abuse that Mikael began, you can end it. You have to, so you can be the light for your little girl. For Hope.”

Cami The Originals season 3 episode 19 No More Heartbreaks Leah Pipes edit

“Love will make you strong. It will make you the man that I know you want to be, and you have to remember that because I won’t be here to remind you.”

Which quote will you remember Cami for?

Another nail has just been placed through the cable box coffin: Hulu has just confirmed reports that they’re putting together a live TV service.

Speaking in front of advertisers on Wednesday morning, Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins said that live TV on Hulu is in the pipeline and will offer consumers a way to watch network and cable channels live via Hulu’s suite of apps.

Hopkins’ comments arrive on the heels of a report in the Wall Street Journal which first revealed the streaming service’s plans. According to that report, ESPN, ABC, Disney, Fox News, FX are the first channels set to join Hulu’s live TV service. Hopkins didn’t confirm any channels during his presentation this morning.

When it launches, Hulu will likely have one of the best shots at making a live TV streaming service take off, and it may seriously disrupt the traditional cable box business. The only other major service currently offering live TV via streaming is Sling TV (with plans starting at $20/month), but unlike Hulu, Sling lacks brand recognition.

Over the past couple of years it’s been widely report that Apple has made several attempts at creating a live TV service like the one Hulu is trying to put together, but the iPhone maker has run into trouble striking deals with the various networks.

Hulu’s current packages allow consumers to watch TV shows from most of the major channels the day after they air on traditional television. Plans start at $7.99 per month.

For some fans, watching TV shows live is important so they can live tweet or discuss their shows elsewhere online immediately after they air. A live TV service from Hulu could cause many people to get rid of their traditional cable boxes, which tend to come saddled with bad user interfaces and extra fees.

Are you tentatively interested in Hulu’s live TV service?

The price of the service will be an important factor in how many people subscribe, of course. Hopefully it’s cheaper than most cable subscriptions.