Dear Gossips,

Ten years ago back in 2007, Eddie Murphy was the presumed frontrunner to win the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his work in Dreamgirls. During the Oscar voting period, however, he was promoting a movie called Norbit, wearing a fat suit. The Norbit posters were everywhere. And then he lost the Oscar to Alan Arkin. Since then, every year, we wonder whether or not an Oscar favourite will be hurt by their very own Norbit effect. The Norbit effect did not get in the way of Eddie Redmayne when Jupiter Ascending came out. And Julianne Moore managed fine when she won her Best Actress Oscar for Still Alice in spite of Seventh Son.

This year there’s no true Norbit candidate for Oscar. But there is Matt Damon. Matt Damon is listed as a producer on Manchester By The Sea. If Manchester wins Best Picture, he’d be up on stage to accept. But Matt Damon is also currently starring in The Great Wall. Slate says it’s “one of the worst performances of (Matt Damon’s) career”. It’s also apparently “one of the worst-reviewed films” of his career. Does this hurt Matt Damon?

The Great Wall did not do well at the North American box office. It is, however, making most of its money back internationally and is considered a hit in China. So you could say that Matt Damon is helping Hollywood get that Chinese money. And I suspect many studio executives and power players within the industry would appreciate him for that. Nobody’s under any illusion that Matt took that role for anything other than the deal, present and future. It’s just that some actors get criticised for their straight up cash moves more than others.

Today is Family Day in many parts of Canada and President’s Day in the United States so it’ll be lighter on the blog but definitely look out for the Annual Contest post to submit your entries!

Yours in gossip,