The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will announce the nominations for it's 77th annual awards Tuesday morning, with the winners to be announced live on February 27th at the annual awards show (hosted this year by Chris Rock). I'll post the nominations here on Tuesday (presuming somebody doesn't beat me to the punch), but for now here's some predictions...
LEAD ACTOR: Jamie Foxx [Ray], Leonardo DiCaprio [The Aviator], Don Cheadle [Hotel Rwanda], Paul Giamatti [Sideways] & Jim Carrey [Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind] SNUBS: Javier Bardem [The Sea Inside], Liam Neeson [Kinsey] & Johnny Depp [Finding Neverland]. Clint Eastwood may also be worthy of a nod for his work in Million Dollar Baby, but he's recognized elsewhere (Directing).
LEAD ACTRESS: Hilary Swank [Million Dollar Baby], Annette Bening [Being Julia], Imelda Staunton [Vera Drake], Kate Winslet [Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind] & Catalina Sandino Moreno [Maria Full of Grace] SNUBS: Some would say Uma Thurman may merit a nom for Kill Bill V2. I'd say that's a maybe, but the acting pool for women has been uncharacteristicly weak this year.
SUPPORTING ACTOR: Clive Owen [Closer], Thomas Haden Church [Sideways], Morgan Freeman [Million Dollar Baby], Jamie Foxx [Collateral] & David Carradine [Kill Bill: Vol. 2] SNUBS: Freddie Highmore [Finding Neverland], James Garner [The Notebook] & Peter Sarsgaard [Kinsey] all deserve nominations, but Kinsey & the Notebook didn't fly with a lot of the audiences...and Highmore's amazingly young. Some would say that the nomination of Keisha Castle-Hughes last year established precedent for nominating young people...I say it's an exception. Carradine gets a spot as part of Hollywood's "Thanks for playing" fairness strategy, similar to the nomination of Paul Newman for Road to Perdition in this category a few years back.
SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Virginia Madsen [Sideways], Cate Blanchett [The Aviator], Natalie Portman [Closer], Laura Linney [Kinsey] & Sophie Okonedo [Hotel Rwanda] SNUBS: Kate Winslet [Finding Neverland], Sharon Warren [Ray] & Meryl Streep [Manchurian Candidate]. Streep's performance has gotten a lot of press (not to mention her "performance" at the Globes) and I don't see the Oscars nominating two people in a double dip (one nod in lead & supporting). Jamie Foxx was awesome in two films and deserves two nods, but I don't think Winslet does. She'll get a nod for her stronger performance (in Lead).
DIRECTION: Martin Scorsese [The Aviator], Alexander Payne [Sideways], Clint Eastwood [Million Dollar Baby], Marc Forster [Finding Neverland] & Walter Salles [The Motorcycle Diaries] SNUBS: Taylor Hackford [Ray], Mike Nichols [Closer], Zhang Yimou [House of Flying Daggers], Bill Condon [Kinsey] & Michel Gondry [Eternal Sunshine]. Ray's direction was nothing to write home about. There were better films (direction-wise) than Closer & Kinsey. Gondry's not that well-known yet (and direction is traditionally a "big-name" category). Yimou loses obligatory "foreign-language direction nominee" spot to Salles.
SCREENPLAYS: ORIGINAL: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Aviator, Kinsey, Hotel Rwanda & Garden State ADAPTATION: Sideways, Million Dollar Baby, Finding Neverland, The Motorcycle Diaries & Closer Ray gets over-looked in favor of better scripts (Hotel Rwanda & Garden State).
ANIMATED FEATURE: The Incredibles, Shrek 2 & The Polar Express
PICTURE: The Aviator, Sideways, Million Dollar Baby, Ray & Finding Neverland SNUBS: Hotel Rwanda, Eternal Sunshine, Kinsey, Closer & a ton of other films. Fairly weak year this year (no HUGE Oscar films ala Lord of the Rings or A Beautiful Mind), but still a ton of great films. I'm fairly confident about these picks. Rwanda gets its due in screenplay (and probably various technical categories), Eternal Sunshine gets a couple acting nods (including Carrey's first nomination), Kinsey gets screenplay & supporting actress, Closer gets a bunch of noms... I'm probably wrong on a few guesses here due to the Academy's annual randomness, but Picture I'm pretty sure of.
EDIT: Replaced Depp with Cheadle & Warren with Okonedo. Just a hunch. Good pre-noms buzz for Hotel Rwanda. Don't think they'll give it a Best Picture nom, though.
(edited by Freeway420 on 24.1.05 2038) "Illusions, Michael. A trick is something a whore does for money...or candy!" - G.O.B. Bluth, Arrested Development
Best Picture Closer Finding Neverland Million Dollar Baby Sideways The Aviator
CHAT: I really can't see Ray making the final cut over Closer, particularly when another two biopic-style movies almost guaranteed to make the top five. Buuut your instincts were right on Cold Mountain last year, Freeway, so you could be onto something.
Best Director Mike Nichols, Closer Clint Eastwood, Million Dollar Baby Martin Scorsese, The Aviator Walter Salles, The Motorcycle Diaries Alexander Payne, Sideways
CHAT: Pleased to see someone else feeling the Motorcycle Diaries undercurrent in action, but again I don't think the Academy would want to pick Forster over old hand Nichols. The latter's made a phenomenal comeback from a pretty lifeless 90s, so even though each film's pretty equl in terms of skill shown I do think the veteran will get the nod.
Best Actor In A Leading Role Johnny Depp, Finding Neverland Liam Neeson, Kinsey Jamie Foxx, Ray Paul Giamatti, Sideways Leonardo DiCaprio, The Aviator
CHAT: Carrey gets bumped as part of the Academy's ongoing campaign of "ehh" against him. Neeson creeps in, or maaaaybe Cheadle.
Best Actress In A Leading Role Annette Bening, Being Julia Nicole Kidman, Birth Kate Winslet, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind Hilary Swank, Million Dollar Baby Imelda Staunton, Vera Drake
CHAT: Kidman beats Moreno, but it's another where it could go either way. Thurman's a dark horse bet, too.
Best Actor In A Supporting Role Clive Owen, Closer David Carradine, Kill Bill: Volume II Morgan Freeman, Million Dollar Baby Thomas Haden Church, Sideways Rodrigo de la Serna, The Motorcycle Diaries
CHAT: I don't see Foxx making the cut here. His performance was great and all butas more and more time has passed folks have (rightly) started to reliase that Cruise was the real premier player of the movie. Plus, I really really wanna see de la Serna nominated. He deserves it.
Best Actress In A Supporting Role Natalie Portman, Closer Laura Linney, Kinsey Virginia Madsen, Sideways Cate Blanchett, The Aviator Meryl Streep, The Manchurian Candidate
CHAT: What can I say? Streep's Hollywood royalty and Warren wasn't *that* good.
Art Direction - Set Decoration: The Aviator, Million Dollar Baby, Finding Neverland, Eternal Sunshine & Lemony Snicket Cinematography: Collateral, The Aviator, The Motorcycle Diaries, Million Dollar Baby & Sideways Costume Design: The Aviator, Ray, A Very Long Engagement, Lemony Snicket & De-Lovely Make-Up: The Aviator, Hellboy & Lemony Snicket Sound Editing: The Aviator, Collateral & Spider-Man 2 Visual Effects: The Aviator, Sky Captain & Spider-Man 2 Sound Mixing: The Aviator, Finding Neverland, Bourne Supremacy, Ray & Spider-Man 2 Film Editing: The Aviator, Sideways, Million Dollar Baby, Eternal Sunshine & Kinsey Original Score: Sideways, Lemony Snicket, The Incredibles, The Motorcycle Diaries & Eternal Sunshine [Aviator is ineligible] Original Song: Alfie, Polar Express, Shrek 2, Hotel Rwanda & Phantom of the Opera Documentary Feature: Super Size Me, Touching the Void, Tupac Resurrection, Born into Brothels & Riding Giants Foreign Language Film: House of Flying Daggers [China], The Chorus [France], The Sea Inside [Spain], Earth & Ashes [Afghanistan] & Far Side of the Moon [Canada]
My Predicted Totals (listed with Rotten Tomatoes freshness): THE AVIATOR [90%]: 13 SIDEWAYS [96%]: 9 MILLION DOLLAR BABY [93%]: 8 FINDING NEVERLAND [84%]: 6 ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND [93%]: 6 RAY [82%]: 5 LEMONY SNICKET'S A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS [69%]: 4 MOTORCYCLE DIARIES [82%]: 4 SPIDER-MAN 2 [93%]: 3 CLOSER [67%]: 3 KINSEY [87%]: 3 COLLATERAL [85%]: 3 HOTEL RWANDA [89%]: 2 THE INCREDIBLES [97%]: 2 SHREK 2 [90%]: 2 POLAR EXPRESS [56%]: 2 BEING JULIA [77%]: 1 VERA DRAKE [90%]: 1 MARIA FULL OF GRACE [96%]: 1 KILL BILL VOL 2 [85%]: 1 GARDEN STATE [88%]: 1 A VERY LONG ENGAGEMENT [78%]: 1 DE-LOVELY [48%]: 1 SKY CAPTAIN & THE WORLD OF TOMORROW [73%]: 1 HELLBOY [78%]: 1 BOURNE SUPREMACY [81%]: 1 ALFIE [48%]: 1 PHANTOM OF THE OPERA [36%]: 1
"Illusions, Michael. A trick is something a whore does for money...or candy!" - G.O.B. Bluth, Arrested Development
Hey, remember that Oscar post from a couple of months back when I confidently guaranteed that Kinsey would get a best picture nod? Uh.....
Are there only three nominees for Animated Film? There were tons of good ones this year to choose from, though Incredibles has to be the heavy favourite.
BEST PICTURE Locks: Aviator, Sideways, Million Dollar Baby Noms: Hotel Rwanda Last Nom: I have no idea. Finding Neverland has been most people's assumed pick, but hasn't the buzz on that film peaked weeks ago? Closer is too cold, Ray isn't really that good of an actual movie (aside from Foxx's amazing performance) and Eternal Sunshine is a masterpiece but maybe too new-age for the Academy. Remember that they didn't nominate Adaptation or Being Malkovich.
If I had a vote, I'd vote for Eternal Sunshine, Spider-Man II, Kill Bill Volume II, Closer and the Incredibles
BEST ACTOR Lock to win: Jamie Foxx Locks: Leonardo DiCaprio, Don Cheadle Noms: Paul Giamatti, Liam Neeson
Foxx is just the man this year.
BEST ACTRESS Lock to win: Hilary Swank Locks: Imelda Staunton, Annette Bening (unless her awful GG speech cost her) Noms: Kate Winslet, Uma Thurman
If I had the vote, Winslet wins in a walkover.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR Locks: Morgan Freeman, Thomas Haden Church, Clive Owen Noms: David Carradine, Freddie Highmore
Toughest call for me. Any of them aside from Highmore are totally worthy.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS Locks: Virginia Madsen, Natalie Portman, Cate Blanchett (even though this was one of the worst performances I've ever seen) Noms: Meryl Streep, Sophie Okonedo
If I had the vote, I'd go with Streep or Portman
(edited by Big Bad on 24.1.05 0215) I'm interested in selling my youngest daughter into slavery as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. She's a Georgetown sophomore, speaks fluent Italian, always cleared the table when it was her turn. What would a good price for her be? While thinking about that, can I ask another? My Chief of Staff Leo McGarry insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly says he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself or is it okay to call the police? Here's one that's really important because we've got a lot of sports fans in this town: touching the skin of a dead pig makes one unclean. Leviticus 11:7. If they promise to wear gloves, can the Washington Redskins still play football? Can Notre Dame? Can West Point? Does the whole town really have to be together to stone my brother John for planting different crops side by side? Can I burn my mother in a small family gathering for wearing garments made from two different threads? Think about those questions, would you? One last thing: while you may be mistaking this for your monthly meeting of the Ignorant Tight-Ass Club, in this building, when the President stands, nobody sits." --- President Jed Bartlett, The West Wing
Who'dve thought we could have a battle of "In Living Color" alums at the Academy Awards? (Carrey and Foxx). Between them, Damon Wayans, the "Scary Movie" Wayans, and J.Lo , oops I mean Jennifer Lopez that show has generated so many stars. Even Kim Coles is on the Celebrity Weight Loss show.
Originally posted by Big BadAre there only three nominees for Animated Film? There were tons of good ones this year to choose from, though Incredibles has to be the heavy favourite.
Sixteen films must submit for nomination for there to be five nominees in the Best Animated category. Your contenders, courtesy the wonderful Cartoon Brew:
Clifford’s Really Big Movie (Par) Ghost in the Shell 2 (DW) Home on the Range (BV) The Incredibles (BV) The Legend of Buddha (Pentamedia) The Polar Express (WB) Shark Tale (DW) Shrek 2 (DW) Sky Blue (Masquerade) The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (Par) Teacher’s Pet (BV)
Go with The Incredibles (which should be nomed for Best Pic, but won't,) Polar Express and Shrek 2.
My best pix predicts: Aviator, Finding Neverland, Hotel Rwanda, MD Baby, Sideways. I can see bumping HR for Closer, but don't see it happening. At least I hope not.
Hierarchy of Deities: Sarah Vowell > Roger Ebert > Albert Pujols > God
So, um, I don't want you to believe everything you hear at the parent-teacher conference, okay, 'cause...they lie. And they exaggerate. That's why they're teachers, right? Those who can't, right, Mom? Those who can't.
The main plot with Cleveland coming to grips with his age feels like it's been done so many times. There were some funny moments, like Junior's conversation with Larry the Leopard ("Why would Danny Glover be in our house?")