The Academy Awards offer Hollywood the opportunity to celebrate the biggest accomplishments in the world of film each year, while also taking the time to pay respects to the many actors and filmmakers that we have lost since the previous ceremony. Given the limited time allotted to look back at those we've lost in the Oscars' "In Memoriam" tribute, not everyone makes the final cut, with horror fans disappointed to see that The Texas Chain Saw Massacre director Tobe Hooper was omitted from the presentation.
Horror doesn't often get to take center stage at the Academy Awards, yet with the social thriller Get Out and the creature feature The Shape of Water earning nominations for Best Picture, many genre fans had hoped that the Academy would honor the filmmaker. Earlier in the ceremony, a montage featured footage from Texas Chain Saw Massacre, making his inclusion in the night's honors feel like a certainty.
The "In Memoriam" segment featured Night of the Living Dead creator George Romero early in the segment, a worthy tribute to the man who gave life to the modern perception of a "zombie." The man who brought Leatherface to life, on the other hand, never appeared in the tribute.
The Academy didn't only omit Hooper, who also directed films like Poltergeist and Lifeforce, but also left out John Mahoney (Frasier, Say Anything), Robert Guillaume (The Lion King, Benson), and Powers Boothe (Marvel's The Avengers, Tombstone).
With Steven Spielberg in attendance for The Post, Hooper's absence was felt by audiences even more strongly, as Hooper worked closely with the filmmaker to make Poltergeist.
Released in 1974, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre helped birth the full-fledged "horror" genre, as films from the '50s and '60s strayed away from gore and were often referred to as "thrillers." When you set a group of weary travelers against a cannibalistic family who skins the faces of their victims to create masks, few words can describe a narrative as well as "horror" can, creating countless imitators and paving the way for the "slasher" movement.
The film has since earned eight sequels, including last year's Leatherface.
Do you think Hooper deserved to be celebrated at the Academy Awards? Let us know in the comments!