February 18, 2007
Those Guilds

Thursday I'll dive into the effect that the ADG, CDG and CAS had on the Oscar race but for now I'll just say this: my initial reaction is one of a considerable deal of surprise.

"Dreamgirls" taking the CAS is expected. The competition all had major strikes against it. "Pan's Labyrinth"'s Eugenio Caballero and Lula Huete taking the ADG and CDG awards for Fantasy can't be considered surprises either. It's also nice to see Peter Lamont deservedly take the ADG for Contemporary despite being on a film with no Oscar nominations.

But Consolata Boyle ("The Queen") beating out guild favourite Patricia Field ("The Devil Wears Prada") is a considerable upset as far as I'm concerned.

Though it's "Curse of the Golden Flower" taking not only Costume Design (over the likes of Sharen Davis and Milena Canonero) but also Art Direction (where it isn't even Oscar-nominated) that is the true shocker. I didn't think enough people would have seen or appreciated the film. I suppose Sony really does know how to handle their foreign titles. Even if I consider this work to be WAY over-the-top, these wins are impressive.

Tonight we have the ASC, where "Children of Men" and Lubezki should triumph with ease (watch out for "The Black Dahlia" and Zsigmond as a dark horse, though) and the ACE. Cases could be made for any of "United 93," "Babel" and "The Departed" in the Drama category; the winner will likely take the Oscar. Logically one would think "Dreamgirls" takes Musical or Comedy but "Little Miss Sunshine" love paying off in a victory here would not stun me at all.


I think Art Direction is going to Pan's Labyrinth. If Dreamgirls can't even beat out a film not even nominated for the oscar, it's not winning here. Plus, Myhre just won last year, and three years before that. If there is any competition for Pan's, it's Rick Heinrichs.
Costume Design is now a mess. It could go to Dreamgirls, or to the more showier costumes, which would be Marie Antoinette or Curse.
And I have to emphasize over and over that people need to stop thinking that Dreamgirls is now a sure thing to take sound. Look at their losing streak. I'd really like to find out if the academy members from other groups know who Kevin O'Connell is. It'd be an interesting survey. If a lot say yes, maybe he can take the oscar.

bblasingame, I don't want to get into this argument this early (I'll talk about this more on Thursday) but I really don't see what's going to beat "Dreamgirls" for Sound Mixing.

"Blood Diamond" just doesn't seem likely. "Flags of Our Fathers" just doesn't seem loved. "Pirates" is a film I just can't see winning very much (Sound Editing and Visual Effects are coming before this and I don't see it winning four).

If only the Sound branch was voting, I agree O'Connell would win. But no guild nod and the fact that "Apocalypto" hardly plays like AMPAS fodder (with Gibson himself doing no favours) makes me extremely doubtful. Next year and "Spider-Man."

All these films competing against each other will result in "Dreamgirls," the clear favourite, taking home the award.

That's an excellent point, and I also have a real problem seeing Pirates of the Caribbean winning more than visual effects. It's not a well reviewed film in the least. But it is the loudest of the bunch, along with Apocalypto, just like King Kong was last year. Also the fact that Minkler and Beemer have been amply rewarded over the past few years doesn't help. But do they have the teams listed in the ballot? But I'd really like to have someone to a survey and ask academy members who they are voting for in this category, or if they know about Kevin O'Connell's losing streak. His story has been heavily publicized this year. He's almost the underdog you want to route for this year. And Mel Gibson doesn't help, but I don't think it hurts either. Let's not forget, the film did get 3 nominations. Maybe they don't care that much.

Also, it's become quite clear after the nominations that the academy dislikes Dreamgirls more than the guilds, and it didn't even win the ADG and CDG. I just have trouble seeing Dreamgirls taking more than 3 awards. They don't love it that much to give it the lead in awards. Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, and Song maybe? Or some different combo? But not 5 or 6 awards.

Anyhow, I await your reply on Thursday. I don't think the tech races have been this exciting in years.

Visual Effects is probably wrapped up. Cinematography probably the same pending tonight. Makeup is a real good bet as well.

But apart from that, you're right. Very open.

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