‘Oscar Wars’: When Academy Awards weren’t just about movies

In “Oscar Wars,” author Michael Schulman looks at shockers and controversies during the Academy Award ceremonies, and how they reflect the larger culture. Credit: HarperCollins

The Oscars are back this Sunday. Last year, the Academy was criticized for how it handled Will Smith infamously slapping Chris Rock and then collecting a Best Actor award minutes later. Rock recently addressed the slap in a new Netflix special called “Chris Rock: Selective Outrage.”

Throughout their 95-year history, the Academy Awards have had their own shocking moments and controversies. New Yorker writer Michael Schulman’s new book looks at some of them, and how those conflicts often reflect what’s going on in the larger culture. His book is “Oscar Wars: A History of Hollywood in Gold, Sweat, and Tears.”



  • Michael Schulman - staff writer for the New Yorker, author of “Oscar Wars: A History of Hollywood in Gold, Sweat, and Tears”