Majority opinions are overlooked in Hollywood

It is a common occurrence across the country that many people do not watch the Oscars due to the awards show’s length and controversies. Ratings for the 90th Academy Awards dropped a staggering 20 percent compared with the previous year, continuing on a downward trend that began almost a decade ago.

It is also important to note that overall television viewership ratings have declined due to an increase of streaming options available to the public.

These are the Academy Awards, however. The Oscars are an important event in the film industry, honoring all of the people involved in the making of a movie, not just the actors. It is not just an American event, but a noble celebration of art from around the world, which forces the public to reflect on modern issues.

The Oscars transcend simply representing film yet many people still have not seen the winner of this year’s best picture award, The Shape of Water. This fantastical film made only $126.4 million worldwide and $57.4 million domestically at the box office. Other popular movies this past year grossed much more.

Black Panther grossed over $800 million worldwide and $500 million domestically, while Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle brought in almost $900 million worldwide and $400 million in the box office domestically. The Shape of Water's gross income is much less than other recent films.

The Shape of Water, however, was a much better production, as illustrated by its 13 Academy Award nominations. Moviegoers should be spending their money on films with artistic sensibility like The Shape of Water.

Movies that are gushed over by the “Hollywood elite” are not for people seeking entertainment. Nowadays, the films that are produced and later nominated do not employ a didactic element. The purpose of every critically acclaimed film is for the elite to confirm their societal ideologies and ensure that in their minds, they are doing the right thing.

It is time for small, independent filmmakers, writers and artists to raise the entertainment industry from the moral beating it has taken over the previous decades and produce, once again, some reinvigorated material.

The current generation is living in an age of opportunity, where anyone can post their material to YouTube or other online media sources to be promoted until they have amassed a large following. Americans can probe for more entertaining material and then share it online. The overriding opinions and beliefs of the viewers should determine today’s artist productions.

Movies that all Americans love should not be used as paychecks for celebrities because those are exactly the movies that should be held up in society as a reflection of the time. Rather, movies reflect the values and opinions of our society; what makes us laugh, cry or question our ideals. The Academy should take the public seriously and realize that if Hollywood refuses to listen to the majority’s opinion, it will continue to lose viewership.