Netflix says 'Roma' had a lot to do with 'Parasite’s' Best Picture Oscar

Gregory Wakeman
Contributor
Roma did rather well at the Oscars, but Parasite did better (Image by Netflix)

Netflix boss Ted Sarandos says that the streaming service deserve some of the credit for Parasite’s huge success at the Academy Awards earlier this year. 

Bong-Joon Ho’s critically acclaimed black comedy thriller was a surprise smash hit across the world. Not only was it the first South Korean film to win an Oscar, but it became the first film since 1955’s Marty to win both the Palme d’Or and the Best Picture Academy Award. 

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It also picked up the best International Feature Film, while Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-won won the Best Original Screenplay, and Bong Joon-ho was awarded Best Director. 

However, Sarandos believes that Alfonso Cuaron’s Roma laid the groundwork for Parasite’s Oscar success.

Last year, Roma received 10 nominations, including Best Picture, but its only victories came in the Best Foreign Language Film and Best Cinematography and Best Director categories, with Cuaron taking home the latter two prizes. 

Parasite went on to win four Academy Awards, including Best Picture (Image by CJ Entertainment)

“I think Roma had a lot to do with that for Parasite this year,” Sarandos told Variety, as part of the publications recent cover story on the streaming service’s global expansion. 

“I think the idea that a foreign-language film had 10 Oscar nominations and won three, and the crossover awards categories for foreign-language film, I think really opened the door for Parasite to be as successful as it was.”

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Sarandos didn’t stop there, though. Netflix’s Co-Chief Executive Officer and Chief Content Officer also says that the release of Bong Joon-ho’s Okja on the streaming service back in 2017 “made audience more receptive to Korean content.”

Netflix’s slate of movies for this year’s awards season looks particularly strong, as Charlie Kaufman’s I’m Thinking Of Ending Things, Aaron Sorkin’s The Trial Of The Chicago 7 and David Fincher’s Mank will all be released over the next few weeks.