Until Oscar do us part

Posted by · 7:06 am · February 1st, 2011

A few days ago, a reader responded to a trivia note by Steve Pond, about the number of Best Actor nominees whose Christian names begin with the same letter, with the question, “Is this the point at which we are officially over-saturated with Oscar stats?”. Well, if we weren’t there then, we might be now. […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

‘King’s Speech’ leads Globe nods, ‘True Grit’ shut out

Posted by · 4:53 am · December 14th, 2010

True to form, the Golden Globe nominations are a buffet of the good, the bad and the unconscionably hideous — with perhaps a touch more emphasis than usual on the third of those this year. I refer, of course, to those largely mortifying Comedy/Musical races, where HFPA voters solved the lack of obvious contenders this […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

First Oscar presenters announced

Posted by · 3:36 pm · December 13th, 2010

With the big night still over two months away, it’s rather early for us to be thinking of Oscar telecast details, but you can bet the show’s frantic producers aren’t feeling quite so calm about it all. As we speak, Rolodexes and little black books are being frantically rifled through as the list of presenters […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

OFF THE CARPET: Giving thanks

Posted by · 9:41 am · November 22nd, 2010

As we move into turkey (or tofurkey, if that happens to be your speed) week 2010, it seems proper, if a tad bit obvious, to take a moment and give thanks. So in lieu of a proper analysis of the season’s progression this week, allow me to express my boundless, breathless appreciation for the following: […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Off the Carpet

Portman on ‘Black Swan’ eroticism: “Extreme, not raunchy”

Posted by · 5:48 pm · November 17th, 2010

When it comes to Oscar campaigning, sex can be something of a double-edged sword. We all know that the Academy has often responded well to attractive young actresses baring flesh for their art: Kate Winslet was the most recent beneficiary, but Halle Berry, Charlize Theron, Holly Hunter and Jane Fonda are among the other actresses […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

‘Frankie & Alice’ poster

Posted by · 12:55 pm · November 15th, 2010

The Halle Berry starrer “Frankie & Alice” screens tonight and throughout the week in Los Angeles.  And Berry may or may not be a contender in this year’s competitive Best Actress race.  (Dave Karger seems to think she is.)  Regardless, I can’t make the screening tonight, but I’ll catch up with it later in the […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

WEEKLY WRAP: Leading men, Halloween horror, comic contenders

Posted by · 8:02 am · October 31st, 2010

• This week’s Off the Carpet column took a roll call of this year’s Best Actor contenders. • Meanwhile, we interviewed one of the strongest of those contenders, “127 Hours” star James Franco. • With “The King’s Speech,” “Another Year” and “Made in Dagenham” all in the hunt, The Long Shot mused on Britain’s back-and-forth […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

UPDATED: Did Halle Berry just exit the Best Actress race?

Posted by · 7:01 pm · October 25th, 2010

UPDATE (10/26): Kris here, following up on Guy’s report yesterday.  I’m told there is correspondence between reps from the film and AMPAS acknowledging that the film would not open in 2009 and that AMPAS has acknowledged the film will be eligible for 2010 consideration.  I’m also told this sort of hiccup is not uncommon.  Steve […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

Did Halle Berry just enter the Best Actress race?

Posted by · 3:25 pm · October 25th, 2010

I feel like I’ve been hearing about Geoffrey Sax’s “Frankie & Alice” for over a year now.  The film was on our early charts last year as one of a million possibilities, but it never nailed down distribution.  This year I just kind of forgot about it, but here’s a press release landing this afternoon […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

The Great Performances: 2001

Posted by · 6:23 pm · November 20th, 2009

In one of the weakest years in memory, not just for performances but for great films, 2001 saw Denzel Washington and Halle Berry knock “two birds out with one stone,” as the former declared on Oscar night, as two African Americans won the top acting prizes for the first time ever.  And it was difficult […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

The Great Performances: 1998

Posted by · 2:03 pm · October 30th, 2009

For all my bitching about Roberto Benigni winning Best Actor in 1998 for his incessant mugging in “Life is Beautiful,” I was also thrilled the Academy watched enough films and paid enough attention to realize that Edward Norton was deserving for his magnetic turn as a neo-Nazi who sees the light in “American History X.” […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

Can Halle Berry turn it around with ‘Frankie & Alice?’

Posted by · 2:55 pm · October 2nd, 2009

Poor Halle Berry has become something of a communal punchbag in recent years among critics seeking examples of the age-old post-Oscar curse; with every disappointing film she makes, the comments about her career (and even her winning performance) get progressively snarkier. Look no further than this rather odd (and somewhat out-of-nowhere) piece in today’s Guardian […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

Nice to be wrong: actresses who changed my mind

Posted by · 7:47 am · December 20th, 2008

Having been a film critic for more than a quarter of a century now (my God) and a film junkie for more than 40 years, I have never gotten over the joy of surprise when an actor or actress comes out of left field with a performance of such brilliance it eliminates every single bad […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

Oscar nominations that made me cheer

Posted by · 3:37 pm · November 16th, 2008

Over the years I have been watching and studying the Oscars in earnest, since about 1974 (age 13).  It has always been a nice surprise when an unexpected actor, director or film made the cut to the final five.  It’s a special kind of high. I remember reacting with surprise and genuine happiness when Giancarlo […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

Do you believe?

Posted by · 3:38 pm · August 25th, 2008

God only knows where the Telegraph managed to dig up this rumour – if it was in The Sun, I’d assume some intern made it up during a particularly slow bank-holiday interlude. But just for fun, let’s humour them and enter their world of make-believe for a moment. Okay? By that token, I’m excited to […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

Lead actress contenders also join interesting group

Posted by · 5:36 pm · May 7th, 2008

As the piece on actors managed to spark some interest and debate, of course I have to explore the women. Though I am studying just the last 20 years, the Best Actress Oscar has often left some of the greatest performances as mere nominees, or in some cases not even that. Katherine Hepburn, though nominated […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily

The LA Times points and laughs at poor bastards

Posted by · 9:37 pm · April 22nd, 2008

It looks like LA Times is still beating that Oscar drum for the old media sect. This week, Susan King writes up the lackluster career choices that followed a number of Academy wins throughout the years. Here’s a look: Just because you win an Oscar doesn’t mean that every subsequent film you make will be […]

Continue reading »

Filed in: Daily