All right, we’re almost through this. Between the NYFCC, NBR, LAFCA, BFCA, and now SAG all announcing their nominations within a couple weeks of each other (and the HFPA’s Golden Globes still to come tomorrow), it’s been an exhausting, acronym-stuffed stretch. But after tomorrow we’ll have a breather for several weeks before the rest of the guilds begin to chime in, and I can maybe get back to actually reviewing some films. Lord knows “Melancholia” merits comment. For now, though, more inane awards babble!
The Screen Actors Guild threw something of a monkey wrench into the season this morning; no, not with the surprise nomination for “Bridesmaids” in Best Ensemble (first of all, that wasn’t actually a complete shocker, and second of all, “Bridesmaids” is still not a contender, so whatever), or even the corresponding nod for Melissa McCarthy in the same film for Best Supporting Actress (it’s a weak year for that category, so nothing is all that surprising there). The story was less what did appear than what got snubbed: namely, “Hugo,” “War Horse,” “Young Adult,” “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” and “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” all getting completely snubbed. Not a single nod.
That hurts poor Gary Oldman the most, whose waaaaaaay-overdue first Oscar nomination suddenly looks rather shaky. The actors revived a similarly flagging campaign by recognizing Glenn Close in “Albert Nobbs;” why couldn’t they find room for Oldman? Well, apparently it was because they preferred the unsung work of Mexican character actor Demian Bichir in Chris Weitz’s indie immigration drama from the summer, “A Better Life.” I still haven’t seen that film, but I again appreciate the outside-the-box thinking. Supporting Actor campaigns for Ben Kingsley and Max von Sydow also took a hit following some intriguing decisions in that category (clearly “Moneyball” has really stuck in voters’ minds), although fellow vet Nick Nolte has seen his hopes revived for scoring a nod for the neglected “Warrior.”
Other than “Albert Nobbs” (which also scored a Supporting nod for Janet McTeer, who as far as I can tell doesn’t even appear in the film’s trailer, so your guess is as good as mine about the quality of that choice), the biggest boost went to “J. Edgar,” which got not only recognition for DiCaprio’s sterling lead performance, but surprisingly also scored for Armie Hammer as well. Did Eastwood’s latest resonate more with industry types than it did with critics?
Elsewhere, consecutive nominations at the Critics’ Choice and SAG show that everyone has finally decided for sure on nominating Jessica Chastain for “The Help.” So that’s settled.
Any comment, dear reader(s)? Can you make any sense out of the overflowing Best Actor category this year? Does the snub here mean anything for the hopes of “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close?” My current predictions for Oscar only match up 1 for 5 with SAG in Best Supporting Actor at the moment – could that possibly happen, or do I need to do some serious re-thinking?
Screen Actors Guild award nominations:
- The Artist
- The Descendants
- The Help
- Midnight in Paris
- Demián Bichir, “A Better Life”
- George Clooney, “The Descendants”
- Leonardo DiCaprio, “J. Edgar”
- Jean Dujardin, “The Artist”
- Brad Pitt, “Moneyball”
- Glenn Close, “Albert Nobbs”
- Viola Davis, “The Help”
- Meryl Streep, “The Iron Lady”
- Tilda Swinton, “We Need to Talk About Kevin”
- Michelle Williams, “My Week with Marilyn”
Outstanding Supporting Actor:
- Kenneth Branagh, “My Week with Marilyn”
- Armie Hammer, “J. Edgar”
- Jonah Hill, “Moneyball”
- Nick Nolte, “Warrior”
- Christopher Plummer, “Beginners”
Outstanding Supporting Actress:
- Bérénice Bejo, “The Artist”
- Jessica Chastain, “The Help”
- Melissa McCarthy, “Bridesmaids”
- Janet McTeer, “Albert Nobbs”
- Octavia Spencer, “The Help”