'Everything Everywhere All at Once' emerges as surprise Oscars favourite

© Robyn Beck, AFP

"Everything Everywhere All at Once," a wacky sci-fi film featuring multiple universes, sex toys and hot dog fingers, enters Sunday's Oscars ceremony as the highly unorthodox frontrunner for best picture.

Academy bosses hope audiences will tune in to see whether the zany $100 million-grossing hit can claim Hollywood's most coveted prize -- and draw a line under Will Smith's infamous slap at last year's gala.

"Everything Everywhere" -- which leads the overall nominations count at 11 -- follows a Chinese immigrant laundromat owner locked in battle with an inter-dimensional supervillain who happens to also be her own daughter.

Michelle Yeoh's heroine Evelyn must harness the power of her alter egos living in parallel universes, which feature hot dogs as human fingers, talking rocks and giant dildos used as weapons.

The film has dominated nearly every awards show in Hollywood, with its charismatic, predominantly Asian stars becoming the feel-good story of the season.

"It's a group of very likable people behind the movie who it's impossible to not be happy for," Hollywood Reporter awards columnist Scott Feinberg told AFP.

But although the quirky film is widely expected to dominate Oscars night, it could hit a stumbling block for best picture.

The approach punishes polarizing films.


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