‘Fire of Love’ Makes Oscars Documentary Shortlist, But ‘Good Night Oppy’ Snubbed

Other nonfiction films on the list include “All the Beauty and the Bloodshed,” “All That Breathes,” “Navalny” and “Moonage Daydream”

Fire of Love - Good Night Oppy
"Fire of Love" (National Geographic Documentary Films/Neon), "Good Night Oppy" (Amazon)

“All The Beauty and the Bloodshed,” “All That Breathes,” “Navalny” and “Fire of Love” are among the 15 films that have made the shortlist in the Oscars’ Best Documentary Feature category, one of 10 shortlists announced by the Academy on Wednesday.

Notably missing from the list: “Good Night Oppy,” the playful documentary about the Mars rover that had been considered a favorite to be nominated and a contender to potentially win the Oscar. But a branch that is sometimes wary of crowd-pleasing movies (including “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?,” which did make the shortlist but wasn’t nominated) left it off a slate of films that deals with addiction, the environment, racism, war and abortion, among other subjects.

The other films on the shortlist included “Bad Axe,” “Children of the Mist,” “Descendant,” “Hidden Letters,” “A House Made of Splinters,” “The Janes,” “Last Flight Home,” “Retrograde” and “The Territory.” Two music-related films, “Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, a Journey, a Song” and the immersive David Bowie film “Moonage Daydream,” made the list.

Other high-profile films left off the list include “I Didn’t See You There,” “Louis Armstrong’s Black & Blues,” “Sidney,” “Riotsville U.S.A.,” “Aftershock” and “Sr.”

The list includes four films directed by people of color and eight with women directors.

Omissions like the one that left “Good Night Oppy” off the list have been fairly rare since the Academy’s Documentary Branch changed the rules several years ago to do away with the small committees that once selected films in the first round of voting. For the most part since then, the shortlists have consisted of the pre-voting favorites.

In the documentary-short category, the 15-film shortlist included films from MTV Documentary Films (“Anastasia,” “Angola Do You Hear Us? Voices From a Plantation Prison,” “As Far as They Can Run”), Netflix (“The Elephant Whisperers,” “The Martha Mitchell Effect”), National Geographic Documentary Films (“The Flagmakers”) and POV Shorts (“Shut Up and Paint”), as well as the basketball doc about Justin Lin, “38 at the Garden,” and the acclaimed Russian film “Halout.”

Find the full documentary shortlists below:


“All That Breathes”
“All the Beauty and the Bloodshed”
“Bad Axe”
“Children of the Mist”
“Fire of Love”
“Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, a Journey, a Song”
“Hidden Letters”
“A House Made of Splinters”
“The Janes”
“Last Flight Home”
“Moonage Daydream”
“The Territory”


“American Justice on Trial: People v. Newton”
“Angola Do You Hear Us? Voices from a Plantation Prison”
“As Far as They Can Run”
“The Elephant Whisperers”
“The Flagmakers”
“Happiness Is £4 Million”
“Holding Moses”
“How Do You Measure a Year?”
“The Martha Mitchell Effect”
“Nuisance Bear”
“Shut Up and Paint”
“Stranger at the Gate”
“38 at the Garden”

The final Oscar nominations will be announced on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023, with the 95th Academy Awards airing on ABC on March 12, 2023.