Movies

Razzies react to backlash for 12-year-old nominee

Every year, the Golden Raspberry Awards are presented on the eve of the Oscars as a counterpoint to Hollywood’s night of nights.

For more than four decades, the “Razzies,” as they are commonly known, have recognized the industry worst films and performances as a way to poke fun at the seriousness and competitiveness of awards season.

Organizers encourage nominees to “own your bad,” but it’s rare for people to actually show up to claim their trophy, with Halle Berry being a famous exception for the time she came to accept her Razzie for Catwoman (2004), which she described in her acceptance speech as “a crappy, horrible movie.”

This year is film is honored with a Razzie nomination — such as it is — includes the Netflix film Blonde about Marilyn Monroe, Disney’s live-action Pinocchio remake with Tom Hanks, and of course, Morbius.

But there is one nomination that has sparked widespread backlash: that of 12-year-old actor Ryan Kiera Armstrong, who was nominated for worst actress for her role in Fire starter.

The film, in which Armstrong starred opposite Zac Efron, is the second adaptation of Stephen King’s 1980 novel of the same name about a little girl with the power of pyrokinesis. In the 1984 film version, Armstrong’s role was played by Drew Barrymore.

The 2022 version was not a critical success. “Nobody here seems to know what they’re doing and, more importantly, why,” the film reviewer for The Guardian wrote.

Rolling Stone called it a “four-alarm disaster“, but was still kind to the little child star (who was 11 at the time of filming), writing, “Armstrong does his best in a largely impossible role.”

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