Jean Dujardin must have been just as surprised as everyone else when he didn’t hear his name being called out as they announced the Best Actor award at tonight’s César ceremony in Paris. The Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinéma opted instead for Omar Sy, who stars in Untouchables, the biggest box-office smash of 2011 in France. A choice that many question.
“Jean Dujardin will win an Oscar for best actor but not a César. How embarrassing…” tweeted (in French) @Les_Cesar_fake, a sentiment that was shared by many others.
Shortly after winning Best Actor, Omar Sy’s Wikipedia page was updated and said that he had won the best actor award “even though he didn’t deserve it.” The comment was removed five minutes later… Another running joke is “Omar m’a tuer” (Omar killed me), in reference to the film of the same name. Maybe the Académie did not want to overcompensate Dujardin… or maybe this was their way of telling the Oscars, “We can do out own thing just to annoy you and everyone else.”
The Artist nevertheless won six of the ten awards it was nominated for, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actress. Hit the jump for a recap of the evening and a full list of winners.
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.
As I’ve been covering awards season pretty extensively here on the site over the past few months, I figured it would be appropriate to (foolishly) try to predict the upcoming Oscar nominations. It’s been a fairly tame year, as a few frontrunners were singled out early in the race and have held their ground throughout the grueling awards season. We haven’t been without a few surprises, as Steven Spielberg’s War Horse took a massive tumble following snubs from most of the major guilds, and David Fincher has surged back into the race bringing his adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo with him.
Though there are plenty of safe bets when it comes to the 2012 Oscar nominations, there are still a few wildcards and tricky categories. I’ve put on my prognosticating cap (those interested can purchase one of these nifty hats at your local Target) and compiled a list of who and what I think will make the cut. Hit the jump to see how I think the nods will stack up when they’re announced on January 24th.
The Golden Globe-nominated director of The Artist has announced his next project: a re-imagining of Fred Zinnemann’s Oscar-winning 1948 film, The Search. Though Michel Hazanavicius is currently in the middle of the awards season for The Artist (a black-and-white, dialogue-free tribute to the silent era of movies), he’s already setting his sights on a contemporary slant on The Search. The original was a story about a mother’s search for her young son who survived the concentration camps of World War II. His version will be set in Chechnya and will focus on the “special relationship between a woman and a young boy as well.” The Artist co-star and Hazanavicius’ wife, Berenice Bejo is already attached as the female lead, an NGO employee in the war-torn republic of Chechnya. Hit the jump for more on The Search.
[This is a re-print of my review from the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival. The Artist opens today in limited release.]
We owe a debt of gratitude to silent films. That may seem like an obvious statement but today the films of that era are considered quaint, and to an extent they are. The progress of cinema is to create an imitation of life and the world has sound. But what if it didn’t? What if the real-world was a silent movie and those who had thrived in that environment had their existence disrupted by the cacophony of noise and progress? Michel Hazanavicius‘ The Artist explores this idea but never in the weighty, heavy-handed manner. It’s a silent movie about a silent movie star but rather than coming off as self-indulgent and irritatingly meta, The Artist is always playful with its conceit. Its light-hearted attitude, thoughtful subtext, and a magnificent performance from star Jean Dujardin, makes for a engaging and uplifting love letter to silent cinema.
Ah, November. Leaves are falling, colder weather is here (depending on where you live), and the 2011 movie season is coming to a close. While angry shoppers and red Starbucks cups generally mean it’s time to start preparing for the many awkward/tense family encounters that are sure to come, it’s also time to start thinking Oscar. We’ve seen a few contenders throughout the year, but a plethora of heavyhitters will be opening over the next 5 weeks.
To aid in your Oscar polls (or to quench your curiosity) we’ve compiled a state of the race preview as of this lovely Thanksgiving week. Granted, a lot can change from now until February, but a good portion of the major players have already been screened and we’re starting to get a sense of how it could all play out. We’ll be examining all the major categories over the next four days, kicking things off with the infamously unpredictable Best Supporting Actor and Actress. Hit the jump to see where things stand.
When Michel Hazanavicius first mentioned his dream about making a silent film to Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo, the stars of his OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies, they thought it was wonderful madness and never imagined such a project could ever be achieved. But when he presented them with the screenplay for The Artist, they realized he had pursued his fantasy all the way. Not only did it have comedy and action, but it was full of emotion, and they were touched by all it said about cinema, its history and actors.
We sat down with Dujardin and Bejo at a roundtable interview to talk about The Artist and what it was like to be a part of the unique project. They told us how they researched their characters and prepared for their roles, which Hollywood icons from that era inspired their performances, why the tap dancing sequence was the biggest challenge, and how they are open to the possibility of an American movie career. Dujardin also described his special relationship with Uggie, his canine sidekick, and why he would enjoy seeing Jim Carrey act in a silent movie.
We owe a debt of gratitude to silent films. That may seem like an obvious statement but today the films of that era are considered quaint, and to an extent they are. The progress of cinema is to create an imitation of life and the world has sound. But what if it didn’t? What if the real-world was a silent movie and those who had thrived in that environment had their existence disrupted by the cacophony of noise and progress? Michel Hazanavicius’ The Artist explores this idea but never in the weighty, heavy-handed manner. It’s a silent movie about a silent movie star but rather than coming off as self-indulgent and irritatingly meta, The Artist is always playful with its conceit. Its light-hearted attitude, thoughtful subtext, and a magnificent performance from star Jean Dujardin, makes for a engaging and uplifting love letter to silent cinema.
Michel Hazanavicius’s The Artist is a loving tribute to the twilight years of the silent movie era. The story revolves around a silent film star who falls in love with a young extra who eventually becomes a movie star. And The Artist is a silent movie. In 2011. That’s just awesome and judging by the glowing response out of the Cannes Film Festival, the movie works. The Weinstein Company picked up the film and has put some serious faith in their marketing team to sell a movie where no one talks. In 2011. That’s going to be jarring for modern audiences (and the leads aren’t American movie stars! Bonus!) but I can’t wait to check out this movie at TIFF.
Hit the jump to check out the trailer. The Artist hits theaters on November 23rd.
Just a week before kick-off, organizers of the 2011 Cannes Film Festival have announced a last-minute addition to the official selection, rounding up the number of films in competition to a nice 20. The Artist, which was originally due to be screened out of competition, will now be up against Terrence Malick’s Tree of Life, Lars Von Trier’s Melancholia and the Dardenne brothers’ Boy With a Bike in the race for the Palme d’Or.
Director Michel Hazanavicius and the star of his Bond-inspired OSS 117 franchise Jean Dujardin have teamed up once again in this black-and-white silent movie about… a silent movie star. Check out the synopsis after the jump.