OSCAR TALK: Ep. 52 — Nominees Luncheon, Bening vs. Portman to a photo finish, WGA and Scripter awards, Melissa Leo’s personal campaign, BAFTA preview with Guy Lodge

Posted by · 9:00 am · February 11th, 2011

Oscar TalkWelcome to Oscar Talk.

In case you’re new to the site and/or the podcast, Oscar Talk is a weekly kudocast, your one-stop awards chat shop between yours truly and Anne Thompson of Thompson on Hollywood. The podcast is weekly, every Friday throughout the season, charting the ups and downs of contenders along the way. Plenty of things change en route to Oscar’s stage and we’re here to address it all as it unfolds.

Anne is calling from New York today, later on in the show we drop in on Guy in London and I’m in Los Angeles as always, so we’ve got quite the international episode for you today. And with plenty happening between last weekend and today, we’ve got tons to cover, so let’s see what’s on the docket today…

Anne was in attendance at Monday’s Academy Nominees Luncheon where the annual class photo was taken and plenty of glad-handing went down. She gives us the scoop.

One of the things of note at the luncheon was the warm response to Annette Bening. She’s right on Natalie Portman’s heels for a variety of reasons and we touch on how she might upset the race.

Last weekend saw the WGA and Scripter awards, the former pretty much irrelevant given the ineligibilities this year that were nevertheless nominated by the Academy. We discuss.

The talk of the week, no doubt, was Melissa Leo’s strong personal campaign that many think could cost her an Oscar. Will it matter?

Coming this weekend, on the heels of yesterday’s London Film Critics Circle vote, is the BAFTA Awards. Is it possible some change in momentum could be hinted at by this or that winner there? We call up our own Guy Lodge to get his perspective on the ground across the pond.

Finally, reader questions. Many sprinkled throughout, a few addressed at the end.

Have a listen to the new podcast below. If the file cuts off for you at any time, try the back-up download link at the bottom of this post. And as always, remember to subscribe to Oscar Talk via iTunes here.


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19 responses so far

  • 1 2-11-2011 at 10:06 am

    Maxim said...

    lol@ Guy’s “young texting masses” line. Not entirely accurate but hilarious.

  • 2 2-11-2011 at 10:23 am

    Maxim said...

    Oh and Tree of Life (the track not the movie)!!!

  • 3 2-11-2011 at 10:26 am

    JJ1 said...

    I don’t necessarily believe HBC will or deserves to win Supporting. But I still believe she did wonders with a very small role. She made something out of a real-life portrayal. She gave an understated, but beautiful and warm ‘supporting’ performance.

    And I’ll tell ya, I felt more in the last scene – when she looks up at Firth and then over to Logue and says ‘thank you’ and then stares at him with such direct appreciation – than I did for other supporting candidates, i.e. Melissa Leo, Weaver.

    I still feel like HBC has a slight shot at the win because of her popularity, TKS momentum, some Brit votes, and a somewhat overdue factor.

    That said, I wonder if Manville will take BAFTA.

  • 4 2-11-2011 at 10:34 am

    Rex Okpodu said...

    I agree about the Melissa Leo debacle.
    Try hard as they are arguing that she wanted to point out her glamorous side by those pics – it seems very after-the-fact spinning.
    Why in God’s name will she need to campaign so hard when she was already very much ahead? It really seems so desperate!

  • 5 2-11-2011 at 10:55 am

    John Gilpatrick said...

    What was the closing music on this? The Fountain?

  • 6 2-11-2011 at 11:09 am

    Afrika said...

    You guys are refreshingly articulate. I enjoyed every second of it. Looking forward to the BAFTA.

  • 7 2-11-2011 at 11:17 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    John: Yes. Track #3. “Tree of Life.”

  • 8 2-11-2011 at 12:08 pm

    Loyal said...

    Thanks for answering my question Kris and Anne.

    With all the noise from certain parts of the Oscar blogging community in regards to The King’s Speech and The Social Network, it was nice to get some real world perspective.

  • 9 2-11-2011 at 12:46 pm

    DarkLayers said...

    What does Guy think of the BAFTA crafts categories? Some pundits and their commenters doubt whether “King’s Speech” could pull off a victory in sound mixing–would it be worth watching BAFTA? They went for Hurt Locker on Sound.

    On Bening and Portman, Karger noted that “Kids are All Right” garnered four nods compared to five for “Black Swan” to reinforce the theme that it’s a close race. (Needless to say, this may not be a useful measure alone: Sidibe and Mulligan had movies with more nods than Bullock and that went down on different terms, Bridges had far fewer than Renner etc.)

    Earlier, Anne mentioned that she imagined that actors and craftspeople would appreciate ‘Black Swan’, but the movie (in my view, unfortunately) didn’t get supporting actress, art direction, and sound when it enjoyed corresponding guild nods. So there seems to be something to that point.

  • 10 2-11-2011 at 12:56 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    It’s a very close race for Best Actress, to be sure.

  • 11 2-11-2011 at 4:26 pm

    Frank Lee said...

    “The King’s Speech” can’t stick out as a disastrous choice for best film if only because so many mediocre movies have won in the past thirty years or so: “Gandhi,” “American Beauty,” “Crash,” and “Chariots of Fire,” in addition to the films the questioner listed (“Ordinary People” and “Dances with Wolves” among them).

  • 12 2-11-2011 at 5:05 pm

    Conor said...

    Frank Lee, I don’t love TKS much either, but despite its safe nature, it’s actually rather widely loved. It’s not really a case of “Crash” at all.

  • 13 2-11-2011 at 6:53 pm

    DarkLayers said...

    Well sil did well in reviews and was widely liked in 98, but negativity came later. Same deal with english patient. I can see how it can be revisionist in some ways, but time does alter perspectives too.

  • 14 2-11-2011 at 7:54 pm

    Speaking English said...

    How are “Dances with Wolves” or “Ordinary People” in any way mediocre?

  • 15 2-11-2011 at 11:50 pm

    Mike said...

    Memento was an original screenplay also even though it was based on a short story, the short story wasn’t released yet.

  • 16 2-12-2011 at 12:33 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Indeed. In fact, Chris never saw his brother’s story while writing. Jonah told him the idea on a cross-country drive and they went off separately and wrote, coming back to the table with different takes on the idea. The best I can tell, it’s an apt comparison to The Social Network, but anyway…

  • 17 2-12-2011 at 5:35 am

    JJ1 said...

    ‘Dances …’ and ‘Ordinary People’ were two of my favorite films of 1990 & 1980. Far from mediocre in my book.

    ‘Goodfellas’ and ‘Raging Bull’ are up there, for sure. Great films. But given an option … I’d prob go with re-watching ‘Dances’ before ‘Goodfellas’, as an example of my own preference.

  • 18 2-12-2011 at 2:10 pm

    Katie said...

    what is that end credit music? Anyone know?

  • 19 2-12-2011 at 2:31 pm

    Conor said...

    It’s “Tree of Life” from The Fountain.