Could Matthew McConaughey be headed for another Oscar, just three years after taking home the Best Actor trophy for Dallas Buyers Club? The “McConnaisance” has been good to the Magic Mike actor, as he’s been able to stretch his talents like never before from sci-fi epics like Interstellar to historical dramas like Free State of Jones. One of his most recent efforts is the highly anticipated drama Gold, and TWC-Dimension announced today that it has slated the film for wide release on Christmas Day of this year, putting it directly into the awards fray.
Gold marks the long-awaited directorial follow-up for Syriana writer/director Stephen Gaghan, who won the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar in 2001 for Traffic. The film revolves around the “epic tale of one man’s pursuit of the American dream,” although this isn’t some historical adventure—it’s a modern day-set story of a prospector desperate for a lucky break who teams up with a geologist (Edagar Ramirez) to find gold in the uncharted jungle of Indonesia. The film’s reach is expansive, as it tracks the adventure of both getting and keeping the gold through “the most powerful boardrooms of Wall Street.”
The picture ticks off a number of the “Oscar precursor” boxes, including the fact that it’s based on a true story. While a film released in December hasn’t won the top Oscar prize in some time, it’s possible The Weinstein Company could be taking the movie on the fall film festival circuit to build buzz before its theatrical release. A TIFF debut, perhaps?
McConaughey has been doing some interesting work lately, and while his most recent picture Free State of Jones missed the mark at the box office, Gold marks yet another fascinating choice of material. But really, the most exciting part of Gold for me is the prospect of seeing Gaghan back behind the camera. It’s been over a decade since the wonderfully intricate Syriana, and one imagines Gold has a lot to say about the state of the world we live in.
December 25th falls on a Sunday this year, so Gold will be hitting theaters just over a week after Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and a few days after Assassin’s Creed, the animated Sing, and the Chris Pratt/Jennifer Lawrence sci-fi romance Passengers. Yes indeed, we’re in for yet another busy holiday movie season.
Can McConaughey break into the Best Actor pack? There are a lot of unknowns at the moment, but Harvey Weinstein for one is bullish on his prospects. Look for a full preview of the Oscar season to come with a new Oscar Beat column soon.