J. Hoberman talks up the NYFCC – some interesting information:
In the acting awards, Sally Fields (“Lincoln”) finally defeated initial front-runner Anne Hathaway (“The Dark Knight Rises” and “Les Miserables”) for Best Supporting Actress on a fourth ballot while, in a rare second ballot win, Matthew McConaughey (“Magic Mike” and “Bernie”) beat outChristoph Waltz (“Django Unchained”) and Tommy Lee Jones (“Lincoln”). The closest and most surprising race sawRachel Weisz (“The Deep Blue Sea”) edged Jennifer Lawrence (“The Hunger Games” and “The Silver Lining Playbook”) and Emmanuelle Riva (“Amour”). Last year’s winner Jessica Chastain (“Zero Dark Thirty”) was a factor throughout, tying for the lead on several ballots. (This race was by far the most polarized; only three of the 16 ballots cast for Lawrence or Chastain cited both actresses.) By contrast Daniel Day Lewis (“Lincoln”), possibly the most feted actor in NYFCC history, led on every ballot but still required three rounds of voting to best the closely bunched trio of Jack Black (“Bernie”),Joaquin Phoenix (“The Master”), and Denis Lavant (“Holy Motors”).
Greig Fraser was named Best Cinematographer for “Zero Dark Thirty,” beating the initial favorite, “The Master” on the third ballot. (In a simple, up and down vote, the critics declined to acknowledge Fraser for his work on “Killing Them Softly.”) Although heavily favored, Tony Kushner’s “Lincoln” screenplay needed four ballots to win over those for “Zero Dark Thirty” and “Moonrise Kingdom.” “The Master”’s relatively poor showing in this race presaging its ultimate fate. An early favorite for Best Director, Paul Thomas Anderson was overwhelmed by Kathryn Bigelow on the second ballot, with Ben Affleck(“Argo”) finishing a distant third. (Strikingly, Steven Spielberg, who failed to get a single first ballot votes, was never in contention.) By this time, it was evident that “Zero Dark Thirty” would run the table and, indeed, “The Master” finished third for Best Picture behind “Argo,” although it took three ballots for the obviously exhausted voters to decide the winner.