Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In



Free Solo Nominated for Oscar!

The award-winning documentary chronicling Alex Honnold’s attempt to free solo El Capitan has been nominated for Best Documentary Feature at the 91st Academy Awards.

Lock Icon

Unlock this article and more benefits with 40% off.

Already have an Outside Account? Sign in

Outside+ Logo

40% Off Outside+.
$4.99/month $2.99/month*

Get the one subscription to fuel all your adventures.

  • Map your next adventure with our premium GPS apps: Gaia GPS Premium and Trailforks Pro.
  • Read unlimited digital content from 15+ brands, including Outside Magazine, Triathlete, Ski, Trail Runner, and VeloNews.
  • Watch 600+ hours of endurance challenges, cycling and skiing action, and travel documentaries.
  • Learn from the pros with expert-led online courses.
Join Outside+

*Outside memberships are billed annually. Print subscriptions available to U.S. residents only. You may cancel your membership at anytime, but no refunds will be issued for payments already made. Upon cancellation, you will have access to your membership through the end of your paid year. More Details

Last week, I met a man in the Puerto Rican jungle who’d been living without Internet or television for years, and who spoke almost no English. Still, when I told him I was a climber, the first thing he said was, “Have you heard of Alex Honnold?”

As exciting as it is for climbers everywhere, it’s not surprising that Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi’s biopic of Honnold’s free solo attempt on El Cap has nabbed a nomination for the 91st Academy Awards. With $14.7 million in box office sales to date, despite a limited theatrical run, as well as 44 nominations and 14 awards internationally, the film and its subject have redefined what’s possible for the sport of climbing and mainstream recognition.

Already famous for co-directing 2015’s Meru—which follows his own, Conrad Anker and Renan Ozturk’s assault on the peak’s “Shark’s Fin” feature—Chin and Vasarhelyi reached a far larger audience with Free Solo. The film and Honnold have successfully captivated minds across the country and the world. This is only the second time a climbing film has been nominated for an Oscar, after Mike Hoover’s short documentary “Solo” (1973), and the first time a feature-length documentary has been nominated.

Nominated for Best Feature Documentary, Free Solo is up against four other films at the Oscars come February:

Minding the Gap is a coming-of-age story shot over twelve years, following the director and his friends as they grow up in Rockford, Illinois, the heart of America’s Rust Belt.

Of Fathers and Sons documents radical Islamism through the lens of family, focusing on the upbringing of two sons under the care of a radicalized father who desires to establish an Islamic Caliphate.

Hale County This Morning, This Evening portrays the lives of two African-American men in  Alabama over the span of five years.

RBG follows the life, trials and triumphs of iconic Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the second female justice in history.

The winner will be announced at the Academy Awards on February 24th.

There’s stiff competition, but as a climber I’d like to think it pales in the face of 3,000 feet of vert sans rope.

Godspeed, Free Solo.

Also Read

Chai Vasarhelyi: On The Making Of Free Solo With Alex Honnold

Also Watch

VIDEO: Solo – 1974 Oscar-Nominated Short Film

VIDEO: Alex Honnold – TED Talk On Free Soloing El Cap