weather icon Mostly Cloudy

What you should know about Sunday’s Oscars

The 93rd Academy Awards won’t look like any Oscars ceremony you’ve ever seen.

For starters, the bulk of the show will take place at Los Angeles’ Union Station. Only nominees and presenters, and the one guest each is allowed to bring, will attend. And, for many of you, Sunday’s broadcast, starting at 5 p.m. on ABC, will be your first glimpse at most — if not all — of the eight best picture nominees.

Because of COVID-19 and the way it’s decimated moviegoing over the past year, the eight films combined to earn just $17.5 million at the domestic box office. Last year, by comparison, “Jojo Rabbit” was the only best picture nominee aside from the two Netflix originals that didn’t cross the $100 million mark. Its relatively meager $33.4 million would be a box office behemoth this time out.

The other big change this year? Diversity.

Of the 20 acting nominees, nine are people of color. Steven Yeun (“Minari”) is the first Asian American best actor nominee. Riz Ahmed (“The Sound of Metal”) is the first Muslim best actor nominee. They’re joined by fellow acting nominees Daniel Kaluuya and LaKeith Stanfield (“Judas and the Black Messiah”), Chadwick Boseman and Viola Davis (“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom”), Leslie Odom Jr. (“One Night in Miami”), Andra Day (“The United States vs. Billie Holiday”) and Yuh-jung Youn (“Minari”).

Before this year, only five women had been nominated for best director, with Kathryn Bigelow (“The Hurt Locker”) the only winner. For the first time, two female directors, Chloé Zhao (“Nomadland”) and Emerald Fennell (“Promising Young Woman”), earned nominations in the same year. They’re joined by David Fincher (“Mank”), Thomas Vinterberg (“Another Round”) and Lee Isaac Chung (“Minari”), just the second Asian American directing nominee following M. Night Shyamalan.

And, at 83, Anthony Hopkins (“The Father”) is the oldest-ever nominee for best actor.

Here’s a look at the nominees for best picture and how you can see them:

“The Father”: An 80-year-old Londoner (Anthony Hopkins) struggles with dementia and the attempts by his daughter (Olivia Colman) to help him. See it via on demand as a premium rental.

“Judas and the Black Messiah”: Career thief William O’Neal (LaKeith Stanfield) is tasked by the FBI with infiltrating the Illinois Black Panther Party and keeping tabs on its leader, Fred Hampton (Daniel Kaluuya). See it via on demand as a premium rental.

“Mank”: Alcoholic screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz (Gary Oldman) races to finish the script for “Citizen Kane” in this black-and-white ode to Old Hollywood. See it on Netflix.

“Minari”: A Korean American family moves to an Arkansas farm in the 1980s in search of their American dream. See it via on demand as a premium rental.

“Nomadland”: When her company town of Empire, Nevada, is all but abandoned, Fern (Frances McDormand) begins living out of a van, picking up seasonal jobs, as a modern-day nomad. See it on Hulu.

“Promising Young Woman”: A medical school dropout (Carey Mulligan) seeks revenge on those responsible for the rape of her best friend. See it at Red Rock or via on demand.

“Sound of Metal”: A punk-metal drummer (Riz Ahmed) copes with hearing loss. See it on Amazon Prime.

“The Trial of the Chicago 7”: The courtroom serves as a backdrop to the story of the seven men charged by the federal government with conspiracy and other crimes stemming from the protests at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. See it on Netflix.

Contact Christopher Lawrence at clawrence@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-4567. Follow @life_onthecouch on Twitter.