For the First Time Ever, a Video Game Qualifies for Oscar Consideration

This article is over 7 years old and may contain outdated information

Recommended Videos

For the first time ever, a video game is eligible for an Academy Award. David OReilly’s Everything has gotten overwhelmingly positive reviews and is, most definitely, a different type of game than most of us are used to. But by winning the Jury Prize for Animation at the Vienna Shorts Festival, it’s now on the Oscar “long list,” a historic accomplishment. To be clear, the game isn’t nominated for an Oscar (yet), but it’s on the list of those “films” that qualify for nomination. It’s a list no other video game or interactive project has ever been on.

It’s not clear if the game itself is actually on the list, or if it’s that gorgeous trailer above, released back in March. The game describes itself as an “open ended interactive experience and reality simulation game.” In it, you travel through the universe, switching off taking the form of, well, everything you come across. OReilly’s game posits that “there are thousands of things that perceive, think and interact differently while being driven by the same underlying rules.” You can play as a rock, a leaf, an elephant, a building … everything, really.




The trailer (presumably the Oscar contender) sets about 10 minutes of gameplay to narration by philosopher Alan Watts, expounding on the nature of humanity and the universe, and breaking past our pre-conceived ideas of what is and isn’t human. In that way, it’s also the perfect thing to break down the Oscar’s preconceived ideas of what is and considered film, let alone “Oscar-worthy” film.

The festival said that Everything, “beyond being entertaining has a strong poetic and philosophical theme. It serves a highly educational purpose, including an important political statement, that encourages to let our egos dissolve and gain a new perspective on the world.” Do yourself a favor and spend 10 minutes with that short up there. I doubt you’ll disagree.

(H/T ScreenRant, image: screengrab)

Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!

The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—

The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Image of Vivian Kane
Vivian Kane
Vivian Kane (she/her) is the Senior News Editor at The Mary Sue, where she's been writing about politics and entertainment (and all the ways in which the two overlap) since the dark days of late 2016. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she gets to put her MFA to use covering the local theatre scene. She is the co-owner of The Pitch, Kansas City’s alt news and culture magazine, alongside her husband, Brock Wilbur, with whom she also shares many cats.