“CODA”, a comedy adapted from “The Aries Family” which follows the complicated life of a deaf family and their hearing daughter, received the supreme Oscar award on Sunday evening, defying the forecasts and making many weights bite the dust heavy in competition.
This victory also allows Apple TV+ to become the first streaming platform to win the Oscars in the flagship category of best feature film.
This victory is in addition to the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Troy Kotsur.
Remake of the French film “La Famille Bélier” by Eric Lartigau (2014), the viewer follows Ruby, a high school student, who juggles between her musical ambitions and her family’s dependence on her to communicate with the “hearing” world.
The title is an acronym for “Child of deaf adult”, which literally means “hearing child of deaf parents”.
“Thank you to the Academy for allowing us to make +CODA+ go down in history,” declared French producer Philippe Rousselet on receiving this statuette.
“CODA” had been swept up by Apple TV+ after a bitter bidding battle after the success of the film during its presentation at the independent Sundance festival. It had reached the record amount of 25 million dollars.
According to Hollywood specialists, the film directed by Sian Heder was content with a budget of only ten million, thanks in particular to the absence of stars and expensive filming locations.
It focuses on the young Ruby Rossi, a high school girl almost like the others. Embodied by the revelation Emilia Jones, the teenager seeks, as often at this age, to find love but she has to deal with the fact of being the only hearing person in her family, who is struggling to make ends meet. .
Her parents and her brother, fisherman near Boston, rely on her to make the link with the outside world and solve many difficulties while the young girl wants nothing more than to follow her dreams and go to study the song.
“Team so tight”
While “La Famille Bélier” lined up hearing actors, which had aroused some criticism, “CODA” chose to favor authenticity by employing deaf artists. Among them we find Marlee Matlin, Oscar for best actress for “The Children of Silence” (1987), who portrays an eccentric and vulnerable mother.
Ruby’s father is played with a lot of humor by Troy Kotsur, himself an Oscar winner for best supporting actor, while Daniel Durant, who interprets the role of the brother, completes a team of actors whose complicity pops the screen.
Troy Kotsur dedicated his award “to deaf people, CODA people and people with disabilities”, applauded in sign language by Hollywood. “Now is our time.”
Exactly a month before the Oscars, “CODA” had already caused a stir by winning the top prize at the SAG Awards. This award is given by the Union of American Actors and, as such, is considered a very good indicator for the Oscars because the actors constitute the most numerous college (about 10,000) within the Academy.
“We are such a tight-knit team, it was a nice prize to win,” Emilia Jones told AFP shortly after receiving the SAG Award.
Like Sian Heder, she learned American Sign Language before filming. The production had hired consultants specialized in sign language to translate the script written by Heder and to make the link between deaf and hearing people on the set.
In certain scenes, comic or moving, the film demonstrates the evocative power of sign language, sometimes understandable even for those who do not master it.
The Oscars preferred this low-budget independent film to heavyweights like favorite Jane Campion’s “Power of the Dog”, Kenneth Branagh’s “Belfast” or the ever-popular Steven Spielberg’s remake of “West Side Story”. .
This unexpected victory is a boon for Apple, which came very late to the streaming market and which has so far struggled to catch up with the industry giant Netflix, both in terms of content and subscribers.
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“CODA” resonates the voice of Apple TV+ with its Oscar victory