Sarah Polley Asked to Return Her Oscar to Academy in Prank by 11-Year-Old Daughter


Sarah Polley’s Oscar for her Women Talking script has not actually been rescinded by the Film Academy, despite her 11-year-old daughter’s valiant April Fools’ Day effort to suggest otherwise.

The filmmaker, who picked up the vaunted prize for best adapted screenplay last month, shared a letter to Twitter on Saturday that she attributed to daughter Eve. The prank involved a typed-out message stating that Polley must send back the trophy in order for it to be given to the team behind Netflix’s All Quiet on the Western Front, who were the actual winners, according to the note. The letter ended with a signoff from Academy president David Rubin, forged signature and all.

“We are giving you one more week to enjoy its presence in your home, but after that period of time you must mail it back to LA, where we will give it to the rightful best adapted screenplay: All Quiet on the Western Front,” the note read. “We are sorry for your loss, but it is only fair that the play with the real best adapted screenplay gets the Oscar.”

The letter went on to include a reference to the infamous 2017 snafu involving La La Land erroneously getting announced as best picture over rightful winner Moonlight. “In hindsight, we should have told you when we realized it, on the night on which the Oscar was given, but you must understand we did not want another ‘Year of the Moonlight’, and we also did not want it to get all over your local news, as the citizens of Toronto would probably be quite irritated, and we do not want this news getting out,” the note continued.

Polley didn’t explain whether she was actually led to believe the letter at any point. Her tweet included the message, “My eleven-year-old swung low for April Fools Day this year.”

Among those playing along in the replies was All Quiet on the Western Front director Edward Berger, who is credited for its screenplay alongside co-writers Lesley Paterson and Ian Stokell.

“Dear Sarah, to save on mailing costs as I live overseas the Academy has asked me to provide you with my address so you can ship the Oscar directly,” Berger tweeted. “I will follow up shortly. Ok with you? All best, Edward.”

Although it didn’t actually prevail for its screenplay, All Quiet on the Western Front earned nine Oscar nominations and four wins. Polley’s Oscar was her first and followed her previous nomination in 2008 for best adapted screenplay for Away From Her. She shares three children with husband David Sandomierski.