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Oscar Rivalry is a 2017 American comedy film directed by Paul Feig, written by Feig and Judd Apatow and produced by Feig, Apatow and Katie Dippold. The cast is led by Chris Pratt and John Krasinski, accompanied by an ensemble including Kurt Russell, Meryl Streep, Christine Baranski, Carol Burnett, Emily Blunt, Jennifer Aniston, Wanda Sykes, Riz Ahmed and Melissa McCarthy.

Plot

Oscar Welch (Chris Pratt) and Oscar Nicholas (John Krasinski) are two acclaimed actors and bonafide rivals, having disliked each other since college and are often mistaken for one another due to their shared first names. The bitterness between the two is fuelled an awards ceremony when Welch wins the Best Actor award over Nicholas. However, the night is ruined for both of them when Welch's actress mom Angela (Meryl Streep) and Nicholas' country singer dad Matthew (Kurt Russell) announce they're not only in a relationship after being set up by Matthew's ex and Angela's friend actress Regina Santiago (Christine Baranski), but also intend to get married. The two rivals must set aside their differences and help their parents, with the assistance of their wives (Jennifer Aniston, Emily Blunt), make it down the aisle successfully. Along the way, they seek help in their former acting coach Winona (Carol Burnett), director Edna St. James (Wanda Sykes), fellow actor Johnny Singh (Riz Ahmed) and renowned psychiatrist Shelley Long (Melissa McCarthy).

Cast

Chris Pratt as Oscar Welch

Oscar Welch is an acclaimed actor, the son of award winning iconic actress Angela Welch and the late composer Richard Welch and the husband of TV producer Karen Welch-Houston. He has won multiple awards in his career, equal to the number his rival Oscar Nicholas has won. He reacts radically when his recently-widowed mother announces her new engagement.

John Krasinski as Oscar Nicholas

Oscar Nicholas is a multi-award winning actor, the son of country icon Matthew Nicholas and his socialite first wife Diane Santiago and the husband of artist and interior designer Courtney Nicholas. He has won many awards during his life as an actor, equal to the number his rival Oscar Welch has won. He reacts fairly negatively but in a calm manner when his 3-time divorced father announces his new engagement.

Kurt Russell as Matthew Nicholas

Matthew Nicholas is a multi-platinum country music icon, the fiancé of Angela Welch and the ex-husband and friend of Regina Santiago, and the father of Oscar Nicholas. After being set up with longtime family friend Angela by his ex-wife, he falls head over heels in love with her and proposes just 2 weeks after dating in secret. Their whirlwind romance causes increased friction between his son and his eventual step-son.

Meryl Streep as Angela Welch

Angela Welch is an award winning acting icon, the mother of Oscar Welch and the widow of the late composer Richard Welch. She is engaged to be married to family friend and country music superstar Matthew Nicholas, despite only dating for two weeks. Their whirlwind romance leads to a crazy reaction from her son.

Christine Baranski as Regina Santiago

Regina Santiago is a legendary Hollywood socialite and television personality, the mother of Oscar Nicholas, the ex-wife of Matthew Nicholas and the close friend of Angela Welch, she sets Matthew up with Angela after they each show an admiration for one another. Diane isn't fazed by their relationship and encourages it, much to the annoyance of her son. She currently stars on her own reality series called Living with Regina.

Carol Burnett as Winona Huntington-Whitley

Winona Huntington-Whitley is a former actress and an acclaimed acting coach in Los Angeles, she trained both Oscar Welch and Oscar Nicholas in the same class and was the first to make note of their rivalry. Both Oscars return to her in order to seek help to resolve their feud for the sake of their parents. She's a very theatrical and eccentric woman.

Emily Blunt as Courtney Nicholas

Courtney Nicholas is an interior designer to the stars, the wife of Oscar Nicholas and the daughter-in-law of Matthew Nicholas and Regina Santiago. She has a carefree attitude and is unfazed by the union of her father-in-law and her latest client.

Jennifer Aniston as Karen Welch-Houston

Karen Welch-Houston is a television producer and the winner of multiple Emmys. She's married to Oscar Welch and is the daughter-in-law of Angela Welch, to whom she was once a personal assistant. She is just as shocked as Oscar when she finds out about the engagement, since its only 6 months since Richard, Angela's husband, died.

Wanda Sykes as Edna St. James

Edna St. James is a beloved film director of critical acclaim. She is noted for her zero-tolerance but wild attitude on set. She is a close friend of Angela and Matthew, and a mentor of sorts to each of the Oscars. She is overjoyed when the two get engaged but understands the Oscars' frustrations.

Riz Ahmed as Johnny Singh

Johnny Singh is also an acclaimed actor, who is often nominated in the same category as the two Oscars. He hates both Oscars as they always win over him and when they come to him for advice, he makes his feelings clear, putting the Oscars' feud into perspective but ultimately having no impact.

Melissa McCarthy as Dr. Shelley Long

Dr. Shelley Long is a popular therapist based in the Hollywood Hills, she serves as a therapist for both the Oscars, Angela, Matthew, Regina, Edna, Johnny, Courtney and Karen, while also being a friend and confidant of Winona. She appears throughout the film and interacts with each character separately, she is known for her frustration due to sharing a name with Cheers actress Shelley Long.

Reception

Critical response

Oscar Rivalry received mostly positive reviews upon its release, with Meryl Streep's performance receiving widespread praise. The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported that 90% of critics gave the film a positive review based on 269 reviews, with an average score of 7.6/10. The site's critical consensus states: "A marriage of genuine characters, gross out gags, and pathos, Oscar Rivalry is a male-driven comedy that refuses to be boxed in as the women emerge as the real stars." Metacritic gives the film a score of 75 out of 100 based on reviews from 39 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B+" on an A+ to F scale.

Box Office

Oscar Rivalry narrowly surpassed Bridesmaids to become the top-grossing Judd Apatow production to date, grossing $27,548,410 on its opening weekend and settling for a strong second place behind DunkirkOscar Rivalry grossed $189,112,785 at the North American domestic box office and $149,876,798 in international markets, totalling $338,988,583. Universal reported that males made up 33 percent of the movie's audience and that 47 percent of the audience was over the age of 30.

Potential Sequel

Rumours of a sequel detailing the Oscars' relationship on the set of their new TV show emerged weeks after the film was released, while other outlets speculated that the film would get a television spin-off, with NBC showing an interest in the project for the 2018/2019 television season. As of September 2017, neither projects have been greenlit/confirmed.

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