The nominations for the 84th Annual Academy Awards have finally been unveiled. Many of the categories have fallen in line just as most have predicted (I fared alright with my predictions, but not great), with Hugo scoring 11 nods, followed closely by The Artist with 10. The biggest surprises are War Horse and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close getting in for Best Picture, the exclusion of The Adventures of Tintin from Best Animated Feature, and The Tree of Life nabbing Best Picture and Best Director nods (hooray!). On the snub side of things, despite landing the most precursor critics awards of any other actor in the race thus far, Albert Brooks was denied a Best Supporting Actor nod for his stellar work in Drive (boo). Additionally, Tilda Swinton was overlooked for giving the best performance of the year in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and AMPAS has no love for Michael Fassbender‘s haunting work in Shame.
There’s still plenty to be happy about, as Gary Oldman has his first ever Oscar Nomination (yes, that’s right) and Melissa McCarthy is a Best Supporting Actress nominee. Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominees. The 84th Academy Awards will be presented by Billy Crystal on February 26th.
Today, the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) announced their nominees for Best Cinematography of 2011. Nominations went to Guillaume Schiffman, (The Artist), Jeff Cronenweth (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Robert Richardson (Hugo), Hoyte van Hoytema (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), and Emmanuel Lubezki (The Tree of Life). The most notable snub is leaving out Janusz Kaminski for War Horse, and it looks like Steven Spielberg‘s movie is just about finished in the Oscar race after having also missed nominations from the Directors Guild and Writers Guild. I would also say the ASC snubbed Roger Deakins for Rango, but I never really expected them to be open-minded enough to acknowledge an animated movie for Best Cinematography.
The ASC winner will be announced February 12th. The ASC victor usually lines up with the Oscar winner. [Correction: /Film's Russ Fischer informs me that Kaminski couldn't have been nominated because he resigned from the society years ago.]
As we cruise through awards season, eventually all of the Oscar categories will firm up. Four nominees will be certain and there will be a little debate concerning who gets the fifth slot. Some of those choices will be correct and others will be boring and predictable. After the jump, I’ve put forward my picks for best actor, actress, supporting actor, supporting actress, director, cinematography, animated film and documentary. I’ve also thrown in my choices for non-Oscar categories for Breakthrough Performance, “A Very Good Year”, Best Villain, “Who’s a Good Boy?”, Best Quote, Best Kill, Best Surprise, and Biggest Disappointment. I hope that one day the Academy will recognize the validity and necessity of a “Best Kill” Oscar.
Hit the jump to check out my miscellaneous “Best of 2011″ picks.
Awards season is officially in full-swing, with this morning’s announcements of the Gotham Awards winners and the full list of nominees for the upcoming Independent Spirit Awards. Now it’s the critics’ turn, as the New York Critics Circle have unveiled their list for the best in film of 2011. The Artist took home the top two prizes (Best Picture and Director), solidifying its status as an Oscar frontrunner. Brad Pitt was named Best Actor for his work in Moneyball and The Tree of Life, with the former also taking the Best Screenplay prize for Aaron Sorkin and Steven Zaillian. As for Best Actress, the undeniably talented Meryl Streep took the honor for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady.
In the supporting categories, Albert Brooks was recognized for his dastardly role in Drive, while the prolific Jessica Chastain was named Best Supporting Actress for her work in The Tree of Life, The Help, and Take Shelter. While The Artist was already running into the Oscars with a good deal of steam, Moneyball‘s two wins give the film a much needed boost heading into the thick of awards season. Hit the jump to see the full list of winners.
Continuing on with our look at the 2012 Oscar race, today we delve into Best Animated Feature and the technical categories. As Pixar’s Cars 2 was the studio’s worst-received feature to date (it currently sits at 38% on Rotten Tomatoes), we’ve got ourselves an actual competition in the Animated Feature category. Not only that, but if all 18 films that were submitted to the Academy are deemed eligible, we’ll have a total of five nominated films. This leaves us to debate the merits of Rango and The Adventures of Tintin against the likes of Puss in Boots and Arthur Christmas.
Additionally, we’ve taken a stab at Best Original Screenplay, Best Adapted Screenplay, and the technical categories. As these are incredibly tricky to predict this far out (and my picks would be doomed to haunt me come February), I’ve simply listed a couple of frontrunners in each category instead of going in depth. Though it’s still early, we’ve got an overall picture of how things look like they’ll stack up; so hit the jump to check out the state of the race so far. If you missed our previous preview articles, be sure to take a look at our picks for Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress, and Best Actor and Best Actress.
By now, it’s common knowledge that writer/director Terrence Malick takes his time in the editing room. It’s a minor miracle that any of his films get released at all. He literally spends years tinkering away at the footage he’s shot, shaping and forming and re-forming the film from the ground up. This past May, his latest film The Tree of Life was finally released. It was met with mixed, yet passionate, reception, as it’s been described as everything from a religious experience to pretentious to boring. Even directors David Fincher and Christopher Nolan have weighed in on the the film’s significance. Now it appears that Malick is currently working on a six-hour cut of the Brad Pitt-starred drama. Hit the jump to see what the auteur’s cinematographer had to say about this very extended director’s cut.
Emmanuel “Chivo” Lubezki has worked on films as diverse as Burn After Reading, The New World, Sleepy Hollow and Children of Men. So what did the veteran cinematographer find so unique about shooting The Tree of Life?
“Once you think you got the formula, you realized there is no formula. It’s like no set I ever worked on.”
The shots on this film were anything but conventional, showcasing grand cosmic displays (with consultation from NASA) and the raw power of nature, often in place of an actor. Chivo describes the process in this way:
“Photography is not used to illustrate dialogue or a performance,” Chivo said. “We’re using it to capture emotion so that the movie is very experiential. It’s meant to trigger tons of memories, like a scent or a perfume.”
The Tree of Life, directed by Terrence Malick, stars Brad Pitt and Sean Penn and is slated to open May 27th, 2011. Hit the jump for a new image from Tree of Life, as well as more from Lubezki.