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James Mangold talks about why Logan was able to snag a big Oscar nomination

We all know LOGAN was amazing. You know it, I know, and from what I hear it's already standard curriculum in most public schools. This is why many stood up and cheered when it was nominated for an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay yesterday, which was a groundbreaking moment for the genre. Director/writer James Mangold spoke about the nomination, and why he feels the movie was able to break through the ceiling.

During a brief interview with the Los Angeles Times, Mangold relayed his excitement about his first Oscar nomination (despite critical darlings like 3:10 TO YUMA and WALK THE LINE). Then the topic shifted to how Oscars and comic book movies don’t often mesh, with Mangold saying plenty of movies have helped in breaking that mold.

I think that there are other filmmakers who have paved the way with their adaptations of comic books that may not have gotten recognition, but have kind of opened people's minds of the possibility of risk and creative invention in that genre.

He continued and revealed why it is he thinks LOGAN, in particular, got such a high honor, and how it symbolizes that institutions like the Academy Awards are opening up to these kinds of movies.

On this film, we really focused on doing something different: a dramatic and character-driven film rather than trying to compete in the arms race of comic-book films… "I can spend more than you, I can blow up more than you." We wanted to make a film that operated on the character engine and emotion. I've been really gratified by the way fans have embraced the movie...It speaks to the idea that people are opening up to all genres to look for creative invention and I'm thrilled that people saw it in the work that Scott Frank, Michael Green and I did.

Comic book movies are not unlike other genre films, according to Mangold, and he believes there’s always room for innovation that can elevate them beyond people’s expectations.

As a genre it takes a long time for people to accept where there can be real creativity and ambition. There was a time when the western was considered a low form or pulpy form, but people invested in it. I very much wanted us to — in the script and in conversation with the cast and crew — to see this film as a personal film. As a film about character more than a franchise or a tentpole.

Comic book movies don’t often escape the tech categories, but LOGAN can rank itself next to THE DARK KNIGHT as being only one of two movies to get into one of the major categories (KNIGHT was nominated for, and won, Best Supporting Actor for Heath Ledger back in 2009).

As much as I also wanted Patrick Stewart and Hugh Jackman to snag acting nominations, the screenplay nomination is still a big deal. Like Mangold said, it's evidence these awards organizations can look beyond the comic book label and see the profound story underneath. LOGAN's chances of winning are slim, but it's still awesome that the movie will be represented on the biggest night of the year in Hollywood. Pressure is on, INFINITY WAR.

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