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The Oscar race is to muggles mostly a beautiful illusion. We all cheer the gods and goddesses as they amble their way down the red carpet, stuffed into spanx, the third day of their Master Cleanse, trying not to look too nervous.  It will be a splendid affair, complete with our own Jack and Jackie — or Most Beautiful Couple in Ben and Jen and the awards will bestowed upon the favorite.

Behind all of that, though, are the people who really do all of the dirty work. The Oscar publicists. They drift in and out mostly invisible. No one knows who they are and I’m not going to expose them now. But any actor knows that before you go out in public at least five people help to get you ready.  With Oscar movies there are dozens of them tracking our dumb, sometimes hateful tweets, working overtime to turn their contender into Oscar gold. The shit they must have to deal with, the rewards they hardly get — and when those trophies are handed out it is the only real confirmation of their hard work. Yes, Virginia, there is more to a win than just people watching the movie and voting. There is a lot more.

So here’s to the hardest working people in the Oscar race who make their contenders look so good.  You deserve at least half of the credit. But of course, if anyone ever dares thank you publicly, as Hillary Swank did, they will be shamelessly ridiculed because, of course, they must have actually earned their win. But there should be an Oscar for Best Campaign.  I’d love to see some of these invisible people take some credit for a change.

75 Comments on this Post

  1. Bob Burns

    time for someone to start naming the publicists and quoting them – no “off the record”.

  2. I NEED ANOTHER OSCAR PODCAST RIGHT NOW!!

  3. Sandra Bullock said, “Did I really earn this, or did I just wear you all down?” And how true that so many will win this year by wearing us all down.

    The only people who didn’t campaign that much were the cast of Lincoln (sans Sally), and that’s why they’re not considered likely to win (sans DDL).

    Is SLP seemingly guaranteed to walk away with *something* because they love the movie, or because they want to put that PR team out of its misery?

    I was thinking that if the Oscars were in March, there’d still be time for an anti-Argo upset. But I don’t think I could bear another month of the SLP press parade, Argo fuck yourself, good screenwriters getting slung through the mud, or awkward social appearances by extremely ambitious but tired nominees.

  4. Actually Bob I should have said the Best Oscar Campaign IS the Best Picture award.

  5. Not necessarily the best campaign is the best picture. Most of the times the best campaign lines up with the best picture because the better a campaign, the better the capacity to create a storyline that can make the Academy members cheer for a film’s victory.

    There are exceptions. The Departed had an awful campaign. But it had the storyline to go all over the way to the top.

  6. “I was thinking that if the Oscars were in March, there’d still be time for an anti-Argo upset”.

    Zach,

    You mention a point that is essential to the understanding of how the awards season work today. In the last decade, there were 3 facts that changed the awards season and shaped it the way it is today. The first one is exactly what you mentioned: the change from March to February. With it, you have to campaign earlier, you have to put your film in a major festival, you can’t hold your film until mid-late december if you want to become a winner and the most important: the contagion factor. There are no more time to upsets. If your film stars winning the guilds, it will mostly win one after the other. The guilds are very close in terms of date. There is no time for backlash. I’m a really big fan of both the films that lead the race last year: The Artist and Hugo… and I feel like if there were 3 more weeks Hugo would have upset The Artist. Hugo was on fire Oscar time winning 5 awards. If it was weeks later, there was time for an upset.

    The second fact is Brokeback losing to Crash. This is a crucial one. With this one, two things happened as a consequence: the Academy has never, since then, chosen a film that is not well regarded by the critics (all of the winners since Crash have more than 80 on Metacritic and 90 in Rotten Tomatoes) and the Academy members are a lot more hesitant to vote against the tendency since they were widely criticized and will be forever criticized for choosing Crash.

    The third one is one that seems not to affect the choice of the BP winner but with a careful look, it is also essential to understand how predictability shapes the choices made nowadays. The Dark Knight and WALL-E were snubbed in the Best Picture race. The Academy was firebombed by the press and the general public because of this. And then they felt it was time to change the voting process… they made an initial experience until they reached the cherry on the predictability’s cake: preferential ballot makes the frontrunner 99% bulletproof because it awards the average, consensus choice… and this choice is made by the guilds and there is not enough change (or desire) to change it.

  7. I really wish you’d named some of the names. We all know this is where the real magic is. Time to pull back the curtain and see who’s really running Oz!

  8. SeattleMoviegoer

    Speaking of Oscar campaigns…i just have to comment once again on the bizarre non-action of Universal with LES MISERABLES. i come from the world of entertainment marketing and Cameron Macintosh is the king of that world. he used his savvy techniques to blast his LES MIZ movie out of the starting gate and it worked wonderfully. he is famous for perpetuating long-term buzz and building box office over long periods of time for his decades-long hits in the West End and Broadway. the result is nothing short of astonishing. his hits have grossed more than any movie–$5, $6, $7 billion takes around the world. yet, about 3 weeks ago the ads and promos on LES MIZ just stopped. while LINCOLN, PI, SILVER, DJANGO and the rest were strutting their stuff and noms with full-page color ads and hit-you-on-the-head promos, LES MIZ went mute. it won more Golden Globes than the rest and went on to win the most BAFTA’s. yet the campaign stayed silent. common sense tells you that when your product is in theatres, (hot or not) you either advertise or suffer from dwindling sales. and that’s what happenend. grosses and daily counts for LES MIZ went down considerably. even tho global grosses are pretty impressive, domestic-wise it looks as tho they gave up early. it’s just a strange thing that they’ve decided to do…or not do.

  9. Marion Cotillard beat Emmanuelle Riva yesterday for best actress at the French Golden Stars awards, a precursor to the Cesars: http://www.cineuropa.org/nw.aspx?t=newsdetail&l=en&did=233457. If she can’t even beat her own countrywoman…

  10. Bold Oscar Predictions

    1. Benh Zeitlin takes Best Director and stuns everybody.

    2. Mark Boal somehow overcome all the controversy and wins Original Screenplay AGAIN beating Tarantino because Oscar voters have come to their senses.

    3. All the three ‘Lincoln’ actors win proving how popular Sally Field is in the Academy.

    4. ‘Skyfall’ wins both the sound awards

    5. Argo gets just two awards – editing and picture

    6. David O Russell takes adapted screenplay for ‘Silver Linings Playbook’ due to his hard core campaign.

  11. If this went into March, I honestly don’t think I would have had the strength to endure more crap relating to ZD30 or Lincoln. It would have still been SLP vs. Argo. Reading the LAT piece on ZD30, it was surprising how Sony seemed insistent on protecting its box office potential (while marketing it strictly to men despite a female protagonist) while having Bigelow and Boal stay silent (Boal regrets this agreement in hindsight) that has even people who worked with Sony upset that they let neither of them talk until it appeared to be too late. The LAT indirectly, while regurgitating things we already knew, said Sony dropped the ball in spectacular fashion. They cannot really say it directly since the awards have not happened (guess they were not waiting for a potential shut-out) but Sony’s track record with The Social Network and ZD30 is that they cannot foresee any pushback to these director-driven procedurals that warm to critics but not AMPAS members.

  12. Tero Heikkinen

    PaulH, are you a complete dork or just being a dick (as always)? Of course, Riva is going to win the César.

    Americans, phew.

    How come most of you are all so stupid? God only knows, and we know that you even believe in that entity that is called God. We have better schools. No God, thanks.

  13. @PaulH,

    The Golden Stars is made up of French cinema journalists and movie critics, not industry insiders…

    So…

    Jessica Chastain beat Jennifer Lawrence for best actress at the Broadcast Film Critics Awards, a precursor to Oscar. If she can’t beat her own countrywoman…

    Or…

    Emmanuelle Riva beat Jennifer Lawrence for best actress at the National Society of Film Critics (the most prestigious and high-brow film critic organization), a precursor to Oscar. If she can’t beat a foreign film actress…

  14. LOL PaulH is doing everything to put down all of the perceived threats to Jennifer Lawrence’s presumed Oscar. No attacks on Wallis and Watts because we all know those two don’t stand a chance.

  15. Tero Heikkinen

    And even if Marion Cotillard won, hey, she was still better than your mediocre JLaw or whatever. Yes, both French actresses should’ve been nominated. César winners are often better than Oscar winners in the end…

    I am proud to be European. Where talents are.

  16. Hollywood Reporter’s critics say Lawrence should prep her victory speech: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/oscars-who-will-win-who-422200

    Todd McCarthy: “A win by Lawrence would honor not only her own prodigious self but also the tradition of resilient, tough and funny broads who never won this award, including Carole Lombard, Barbara Stanwyck and Rosalind Russell.”

  17. Tero Heikkinen

    I must take something back. I shouldn’t call ALL Americans stupid just because PaulH is one.

    Sorry.

  18. And, what’s their proof PaulH? Again, all these pundits may be right since they’re following the direction of where the perceived wind of favor is blowing.

    However, they could also be wrong. None of the links you’re providing is showing beyond a reasonable doubt that Lawrence will win. It has no bearing on who the Academy members voted for. What’s their proof? What kind of scientific mathematical formula are they basing their presumptions on?

    It’s easy to say Lawrence will win because of the precursors and her popularity. But these are still guesses.

    Anyway, why do you keep providing links that are predicting Lawrence will win? It doesn’t really prove your point. If you’re trying to convince ardent-Riva predictors that Riva has no chance, what does it matter to you if they won’t change their prediction? IF anything, if Lawrence wins, you’ll have bigger bragging rights. If Lawrence loses, then all the links your provided will mean nothing.

    BTW, as a fan of Stanwyck, Lombard, and Russell…Lawrence has a long way to go before she can be compared to those brilliant actresses whose strength are in their impeccable comedic timing and line delivery. My problem with Lawrence is that she speaks her lines (when she’s not screaming) as if she’s totally bored. It’s not comically bored to be perfect dead-pan delivery like April Lundgate in Parks and Recreation. It’s just…lack of conviction.

  19. I’ve never insulted anyone on here, Tero, so being called stupid by you only reflects badly *on you*.

  20. Great comment CMG! Someone needs to be fired over at Sony. First, they fucked up The Social Network campaign two years ago. Did they learn ANYTHING? Did they figure out how to position a film for the Academy? Nope. All the critics, all the bloggers, the HFPA were behind the movie—it was the PERFECT start they needed, that any film would die for…and all they had left was win over AMPAS. And they couldn’t even get David Fincher Best Director. Then, this year they fucked up Zero Dark Thirty’s campaign, mere months after toasting Best Picture and Best Actress wins in Amy Pascal’s office. LOLZ. And what did Jessica Chastain say in her Globes acceptance speech about Sony “protecting our film”…..RIIIIGHT. Moral of the story: if you want Oscars and have a great movie, don’t go to Sony to distribute your film. I can just tell Mark Boal would love to tell more; he’s been itching to talk about all this crap since the it began in December. I hope, in the unlikely situation he wins Best Original Screenplay, he gives let’s just say a “memorable” acceptance speech.

  21. Tero Heikkinen

    You have insulted Riva. That’s enough for me, prick.

  22. Sasha, can you elaborate on Swank. I’m aware of her getting poked at for the Chechnyan debacle two years ago, as well not thanking her husband during her first Oscar Speech twelve years ago.

    Not aware of her getting ridiculed for not thanking her PR/Makeup artist/etc.

    ???

  23. Wow, Tero, you actually managed to lose to Paul. Pathetic. I can guarantee Riva doesn’t care as much as you. Maybe take a break.

  24. Ha!

    PaulH, you keep doing this.

    First Huffington Post and now Hollywood Reporter.

    Last year, they predicted Viola Davis to win it easily.

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/oscars-2012-predictions-294797

    “Look for The Help’s Viola Davis to hold off Meryl Streep’s bid and take home the best actress prize. Several factors fall in her favor: She has not previously won (Streep has picked up trophies twice, albeit not in 29 years); she is up for a well-liked film (which, unlike Streep’s, is nominated for best picture); by becoming only the second black best actress winner, she would be making history; and she has already beaten Streep on the latter’s home turf with the BFCA critics and actors of SAG.”

    At least with this year, they’re tempted to go with Riva, while last year, they were utterly convinced Davis had it in the bag.

  25. Tero Heikkinen

    Mack <3 PaulH.

    How cute.

  26. Tero Heikkinen

    Maybe go fuck yourself?

  27. 1) “How come most of you are all so stupid?”

    2) “I am proud to be European. Where talents are.”

    3) The lesson here is superiority and condescension equals intelligence.

    “I must take something back. I shouldn’t call ALL Americans stupid just because PaulH is one.”

    Gee, thanks? Or, Tero, do you get to personally pick which Americans are and aren’t stupid? I hope you take time to get up off of your throne and walk around every once in a while to increase some of that blood circulating up to that lofty brain of yours.

    (The climax of Oscar season certainly brings out the worst in some.)

  28. Tero Heikkinen

    There comes a time when someone must stand up and say out loud that all this stupidity must end. Even when you yourself must burn on the bonfire.

    I don’t care, other than I just want this year to be over soon. Many of you are thinking the same.

    And yes, I’ve been listening to PaulH’s shit for too long. I’ve had enough.

  29. Loved the Todd McCarthy quote. We all know too well that comedies in general get the short end of the stick at the Oscars and generally operate from a deficit. I didn’t really care for SLP, but Jennifer Lawrence as Tiffany hit it out of the park. People like to say that any major actress her age could have duplicated her performance. And, to that, I kindly disagree. She was electrifying. Hope she wins.

  30. “There comes a time when someone must stand up and say out loud that all this stupidity must end”? “Burn on the bonfire”?

    LOL. Are you Howard Beale? Joan of Arc? Norma Rae? This is the Oscars. No one died here. Get a grip.

    Actually, no. Don’t get a grip. I’m enjoying this *too* much. Carry on.

    Please: More superior European martyrdom. So charming, so educational.

  31. Tero Heikkinen

    Vince, you know that MOST Americans are stupid. Compared to many, I am an English teacher. Probably Europeans are stupid, too, but at least they speak 2-4 languages.

    No, I don’t get to choose who is stupid. I get to pick only PaulH and if that is not good for you, then ok. Mack is just being a dick (same way as I am), but he’s not stupid.

  32. daveinprogress

    Jennifer Lawrence deserved better drivel than the ‘BAFTA ‘What Were You Thinking You Daft Luvvies You’ Winning’ Nonsense from David O (O for Ordinary) Russell. I too would not put her in the same zip code as Lombard or Russell. Give her time though. Let’s see what else she can do. I think Shailene Woodley, Carey Mulligan (ok she’s older than 22), Bojana Novakovic, Andrea Riseborough, Saorise Ronan, Alison Pill, Dakota Fanning are all up and coming peers of Ms Lawrence. Some have been working a few years like Jennifer. She is far from the pre-eminent ingenue of her time.

  33. Tero Heikkinen

    Huh, I got it. Another lost in translation thing. Yes, I could be Joan of Arc, for sure.

    No, Vince. You will not get more of this. European martyrdom is something we can do. We have reasons.

  34. Tero, i honestly thought you were trolling. i am actually disappointed you weren’t. Anyway, when it comes to film probably 70 percent of Americans are stupid, but i honestly don’t believe the percentage is much better in Europe. Just because Europeans grow up speaking multiple languages doesn’t make them any smarter when it comes to the arts.

    And never forget, you are on a message board discussing fucking awards. There might not be anything more meaningless. It might be fun to follow but taking it seriously is insane. I think she should win, too, but I know that zero lives will be affected If she doesn’t.

    Though Paul’s Riva bias is admittedly annoying, you have to realize he hasn’t even seen Amour so there is no use arguing or getting upset w him. And calling strangers on the Internet dicks, idiot, pricks, etc., people you don’t know a thing about…that’s the sign of a deeply unhappy person. That’s why I said you should calm down.

  35. “Vince, you know that MOST Americans are stupid.”

    Since, you already know what I think, then I guess we’re done here.

    And, I only speak one language (fluently), so I’m surprised you’re even bothering to carry on a conversation with me. I feel so *honored*.

    Thank you, for glancing upon my being for even a brief moment, King Tero. I shall never forget this kindness you bestowed. Now, excuse me while I go back to mopping the royal floors you tread upon.

  36. Tero Heikkinen

    You missed a spot. There!

    Funny how, on my behalf, hating on one person, comes to hating on three in the end. USA is so cool there, supporting their own.

    Mack has a point, though. This IS a fucking awards site.

  37. Pierre de Plume

    I forgot what this thread is about….

  38. … it’s about how stupid, illiterate, unilingual, and supportive of each other Americans are.

    And, it’s a lesson that this is a “[expletive] awards site.”

    Apparently, one long-term European AD commenter didn’t get the memo.

  39. Tero Heikkinen

    So, Vince proves that it’s not just Europeans exaggerating things.

  40. Pierre de Plume

    Nah, Vince….. That’s boring.

    In other news, The Reel Geezers are still doing their thing! They discuss Argo, The Master, and even bring up Serpico and Dances With Wolves:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ps4dNM4bFGE

  41. “This IS a fucking awards site.”

    Yes. It. Is.

    But the hypocrisy of some of the comments here, along with the pure venom spurting out against other films and filmakers here…

    It’s like throwing your least favourite child in the fire to save your favorite.
    You have all been banging on for weeks about Argo vs Lincoln. I’m not sure that’s the race.

    PaulH is waiting to kneecap Riva with a baseball bat so Lawrence can win by default. And then claim it was for Hunger Games, Avengers or Howard the Duck?

    WTF?

    Oscar is MOLR mostly, so you sdon’t want to win here. So here’s a scene from the best flm of the year. Enjoy
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QdvBLFI5kIs

  42. Tero,

    As a self-professed “English teacher” (comparatively speaking to other Americans, of course, as this isn’t your profession, but I’m sure you wouldn’t have any problem getting a position in that field), you certainly do miss a lot with the language. Just an observation.

  43. @ PaulH,

    just as Jean Dujardin lost the Cesar last year..
    It’s called jealousy.

  44. Finns are hemorrhoid-laden assholes, there!

  45. Hold up everyone, I’m gonna grab my popcorn. This shit is just too good :)

    I’ve been rooting for “Amour” since day one. I predicted the nods for actress, director and picture. I believe that among all the movies nominated “Amour” stands out as the most intelligent, emotionally riveting, heart wrenching and honest cinematic acomplishments. It’s simply the best film of the year, by far. Having said that, I think Lawrence will win. She’s the girl of the hour, has a charming smile, has a very flashy and loud role in SLP, has a franchise on her shoulders and an interesting career in front of her. People like her and wish her well, so she’ll get an Oscar with that wishes and be sent off into the great big world of Hollywood.

    “Amour” on the other hand will end up with just one Oscar for best foreign film, which is great. Hollywood however is not keen on awarding european auteurs, the real ones. Sure, they’ll give them a best foreign film award once in a while, but apart from that it’s just nominations. I still think that 5 nominations (including BP and BD) for “Amour” is an outstanding achievements. This could have easily gone down the “depressing-european-flick-about-old-people-dying” aisle. But it didn’t. Practically without any campaigning it managed to punch through to people’s hearts. I’m very glad it did.

    There is no way in escaping the obvious comparison to Bergman and “Cries and Whispers”. That was way back in 1974. Academy had the guts to name a visionary masterpiece one of the 5 best pictures made that year. “Amour” is not among “the five” anymore, but I have this crazy feeling that it would be, if it was still down to five movies. We’ll never know. However “Amour” has made a dent. The first uneasy foreign language masterpiece to show up in the major categories in almost 40 years. I’m not saying Haneke has a Bergman-like status, but in 20, 30, 50 years people will see the significance of choosing “Amour” for BP over let’s say “Avengers” or “Dark Knight Rises”.

  46. Tero Heikkinen

    This website has readers who can actually write, so this is not normal. Go to IMDb and you see “could of” instead of “could have”, for example.

    My own language is one of the most difficult ones in the world. As an example, we don’t use “in”, “on”, “at”, “for”, “from” etc… Those are very hard for us. Good thing that we are a bilingual country, so knowing Swedish helps you in English quite a bit. After all, they are related.

  47. 39th Annual Saturn Awards nominations were announced overnight. This is from the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films (which also has a TV branch as well). Here are the nominees, winners in June:

    Best Sci-Fi Film:
    THE AVENGERS
    CHRONICLE
    CLOUD ATLAS
    THE HUNGER GAMES
    LOOPER
    PROMETHEUS

    Best Fantasy Film:
    THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN
    THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    LIFE OF PI
    RUBY SPARKS
    SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN
    TED

    Best Horror/Thriller:
    ARGO
    THE CABIN IN THE WOODS
    THE IMPOSSIBLE
    SEVEN PSYCHOPATHS
    THE WOMAN IN BLACK
    ZERO DARK THIRTY

    Best Action/Adventure:
    THE BOURNE LEGACY
    THE DARK KNIGHT RISES
    DJANGO UNCHAINED
    LES MISERABLES
    SKYFALL
    TAKEN 2

    Best Independent Film:
    COMPLIANCE
    HITCHCOCK
    KILLER JOE
    THE PAPERBOY
    ROBOT AND FRANK
    SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED
    SEEKING A FRIEND FOR THE END OF THE WORLD

    Best Actor:
    CHRISTIAN BALE, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES
    DANIEL CRAIG, SKYFALL
    MARTIN FREEMAN, THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    HUGH JACKMAN, LES MISERABLES
    JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT, LOOPER
    MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY, KILLER JOE

    Best Actress:
    JESSICA CHASTAIN, ZERO DARK THIRTY
    ANN DOWD; COMPLIANCE
    ZOE KAZAN, RUBY SPARKS
    JENNIFER LAWRENCE, THE HUNGER GAMES
    HELEN MIRREN, HITCHCOCK
    NAOMI WATTS, THE IMPOSSIBLE

    Best Supporting Actor:
    JAVIER BARDEM, SKYFALL
    MICHAEL FASSBENDER, PROMETHEUS
    CLARK GREGG, THE AVENGERS
    JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES
    SIR IAN MCKELLEN, THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    CHRISTOPH WALTZ, DJANGO UNCHAINED

    Best Supporting Actress:
    DAME JUDI DENCH, SKYFALL
    GINA GERSHON, KILLER JOE
    ANNE HATHAWAY, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES and LES MISERABLES
    NICOLE KIDMAN, THE PAPERBOY
    CHARLIZE THERON; SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNSTMAN

    Best Young Performer:
    CJ ADAMS, THE ODD LIFE OF TIMOTHY GREEN
    TOM HOLLAND, THE IMPOSSIBLE
    DANIEL HUTTLESTONE, LES MISERABLES
    CHLOE GRACE MORETZ, DARK SHADOWS
    SURAJ SHARMA, LIFE OF PI
    QUVENZHANE WALLIS, BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD

    Best Director:
    WILLIAM FRIEDKIN, KILLER JOE
    PETER JACKSON, THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    RIAN JOHNSON, LOOPER
    ANG LEE, LIFE OF PI
    CHRISTOPHER NOLAN, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES
    JOSS WHEDON, THE AVENGERS

    Best Writing:
    TRACY LETTS, KILLER JOE
    DAVID MAGEE, LIFE OF PI
    MARTIN MCDONAGH, SEVEN PSYCHOPATHS
    QUENTIN TARANTINO, DJANGO UNCHAINED
    JOSS WHEDON, THE AVENGERS
    JOSS WHEDON, DREW GODDARD, THE CABIN IN THE WOODS

    Best Production Design
    CLOUD ATLAS
    ANNA KARENINA
    LIFE OF PI
    DARK SHADOWS
    THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    LES MISERABLES

    Best Editing
    SKYFALL
    CLOUD ATLAS
    LOOPER
    THE AVENGERS
    THE BOURNE LEGACY
    LIFE OF PI

    Best Music
    LIFE OF PI
    FRANKENWEENIE
    ANNA KARENINA
    SKYFALL
    THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    THE DARK KNIGHT RISES

    Best Costume Design
    ANNA KARENINA
    CLOUD ATLAS
    DJANGO UNCHAINED
    THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    LES MISERABLES
    SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN

    Best Makeup
    CLOUD ATLAS
    HITCHCOCK
    THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    THE IMPOSSIBLE
    SKYFALL
    TWILIGHT SAGA: BREAKING DAWN, PART 2

    Best Visual Effects:
    THE AVENGERS
    BATTLESHIP
    THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY
    JOHN CARTER
    LIFE OF PI
    SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN

    Best International Film
    ANNA KARENINA
    CHICKEN WITH PLUMS
    THE FAIRY
    HEADHUNTERS
    MY WAY
    PUSHER

    Best Animated Film
    BRAVE
    FRANKENWEENIE
    PARANORMAN
    WRECK-IT RALPH

  48. Riva snubbed at the Saturn Awards. Well, I guess she’s really going down the drain right now.

  49. Thank you, Mattoc. A voice of reason (and a good clip). We need more of your wisdom.

    Posters taking the bait always turns this place into a child’s sandbox.

    Actually I came on to see who won the CDGA last night.

  50. Name *Byron E. Gray

    I see where the academy is officially dropping the name “Academy Awards” and simply calling it the Oscars. What insanity. Apparently it’s too fuddy-duddy to call it the Academy Awards now. There is only one Academy Award. The Emmys, the Grammys, the Tonys are small potatoes by comparison. Is this a move to appeal to a youth demographic (who gives a damn about them)? Or it it another example of our now dumbed-down, Obama America where sophistication and prestige equates to exclusion of the masses? The academy should be proud of its 85 years of history and tradition and prestige. Not running away from it.

  51. Although I dislike their lack of nominations for Amour (they probably haven’t seen it) or Beasts of the Southern Wild, I do like seeing an award show that hasn’t nominated Argo, Silver Linings Playbook, or Lincoln.

    It gets so tiring seeing the same ole’ nominees. Plus, I like that Life of Pi was showered with love from The Saturn Awards.

    It’s sort of a confusing awarding body though. I know the focus is on Sci-Fi and Fantasy films, but there are certainly movies that don’t fit those genres nominated, such as Ann Dowd in Compliance (nice to see her get some love).

  52. ByronGray,

    What are you talking about? It’s still officially called the Academy Awards.

    Not to get off-tangent, but since when as exclusivity equated to intellect as opposed to just classicism not based on merit? Or did you just want to go into some lazy Obama rant?

  53. The Saturn nominees are better than the Oscars’! And so…inclusive. Waltz, Hathaway, Jackman, Les Mis, Sharma, Fassbender, Theron, Lawrence for the right film, Wallis, Watts, The Impossible, Holland, Freeman, Craig, Bardem, Dench, Chastain, Kidman, Ann Dowd! I only miss Noomi Rapace and Ewan McGregor. And question the power of Hitchcock/Mirren and how The Paperboy could get a Best Pic nomination.

  54. Ballots closed, it is time now to vote for the worst pushing agendas in the 5 major categories:

    worst pushing agenda for BP: Silver Linings Playbook (tie) Lincoln (thanks to this website)
    worst pushing agenda for Best Director: David o Russell (go Emanuelle Riva go)
    worst pushing agenda for Best Lead Actress: Jennifer Lawrence
    worst pushing agenda for Best Actor: Nobody
    worst pushing agenda for Best original screenplay: Django Unchained
    worst pushing agenda for Best adapted screenplay: Lincoln

    And finally, the Viola Davis Award for the most uneffective campaign goes to: Lincoln

  55. Victor Barreto

    Riva won’t win simply because she wasn’t in your country campaigning hard like JLaw and JChas.

  56. richard Crawford

    H u g e l y B o r i n g ! hee/haw.

  57. @PaulH, I was JUST about to post that link saying “I may be late to the game but…” and it was a great read. I’m surprised by McCarhty’s picks. I commend him on saying Phoenix deserves it, “My stovepipe hat’s off to Day-Lewis, but Phoenix takes the milkshake this time.” And the way he said PSH’s Lancaster Dodd echoes Charles Foster Kane made my head snap back and go “Wow!”

  58. Nominee breakdown by film, then studio:

    Nominees by film:
    9 The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
    8 Life of Pi
    7 Skyfall
    6 The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises, Les Miserables
    5 Cloud Atlas, Killer Joe
    4 Anna Karenina, Django Unchained, The Impossible, Looper, Snow White and the Huntsman
    3 Hitchcock
    2 The Bourne Legacy, The Cabin in the Woods, Compliance, Dark Shadows, Frankenweenie, The Hunger Games, The Paperboy, Prometheus, Ruby Sparks, Seven Psychopaths, Zero Dark Thirty
    1 The Amazing SpiderMan, Argo, Battleship, Beasts of the Southern Wild. Brave, Chicken with Plums, Chronicle, The Fairy, Headhunters, John Carter, My Way, The Odd Life of Timothy Green, Paranorman, Pusher, Robot and Frank, Safety Not Guaranteed, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, Taken 2, Ted, Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 2, Woman in Black, Wreck-It Ralph

    Studio
    23 Warner Bros.
    14 Sony, Universal
    12 20th Century Fox
    6 Focus Features, Fox Searchlight, Marvel, Summit, Disney
    5 LD Entertainment
    4 The Weinstein Company
    3 CBS Films, Lionsgate, Magnolia
    2 Millennium
    1 FilmDistrict, Kino Lorber, Radius, Samuel Goldwyn Films, Sony Pictures Classics, Well Go USA

  59. I guess if people are done calling most Americans stupid we can get back to the actual topic on hand. When it comes to movies, most Americans are uninformed, not stupid. It’s our love for film that drives us to go the extra mile and watch a fucking special feature. When it comes to speaking more than one language, most Americans learn a 2nd language in school but have no need to use it later in life simply because everyone else around them speaks the same language. This isn’t Europe where there are many different languages floating around, this is “good ol’ rock-a-billy US of Amuuurca”. So it’s not quite fair to call most Americans stupid in general. MOST Americans are smart in an area or two. Just because box office will reign Identity Thief or Transformers 18 king, or you saw an episode of Jersey Shore or Buckwild, doesn’t mean most Americans are stupid. If there is a line to register where to place our lips on thine ass, I’d certainly like to know so I can let all of my stupid brethren know where we can bask in someone’s eternal greatness.

    I realize I’m getting passionate about this but if comments like the ones above are made then maybe an American should take a minute and present a counter argument for arguments sake.

  60. 1. Benh Zeitlin takes Best Director and stuns everybody.

    2. Mark Boal somehow overcome all the controversy and wins Original Screenplay AGAIN beating Tarantino because Oscar voters have come to their senses.

    3. All the three ‘Lincoln’ actors win proving how popular Sally Field is in the Academy.

    4. ‘Skyfall’ wins both the sound awards

    5. Argo gets just two awards – editing and picture

    6. David O Russell takes adapted screenplay for ‘Silver Linings Playbook’ due to his hard core campaign.

    These don’t seem all that crazy to me. I guess the only one I think I would change is having Argo win screenplay along with picture. The best thing about Argo is the screenplay so I don’t see how it can lose.

  61. re: Saturns…is is possible everyone underestimated The Hobbit? 65 RT, 58 Metacritic, yet led all nominees today…

  62. Reichdome back with Avengeance

    @ Antoinette with utmost respect and i encourage you to respond to my thoughts in response to your reaction to the more ‘vocal’ commenters here I find myself strongly disagreeing with you or your implication of you compaining bout vocal majority against certain films. Isn’t it obvious to you and others by now? MOST PEOPLE ARE PISSED THE HELL OFF WITH OSCARS DOUBLESTANDARDS AND HALF BAKED RECKLESS AND IRRESPONSIBLE deciswions. AND YET ME AS RATIONAL as one gets typos not withstanding have arrivbed at the point i had a GUTFUL of oscars bullshit. I sorry to say and i not trying to be destructive but in the context of the fine line betweren what is tolerable and what is not I like so many others have had it.
    What i like to think someone lovely and intelligent as yourself who comments i greatly respect is that there only so much true film fans in the global movie going public can take of oscar’s tripe that they server moldy and going off smelling like a absolute stink bomb of a swamp.
    If and i believe you are truly genuinely passionate about film you too surely? would be thrown by oscars illogical decision making 60% of the time against the wiashes of those who know what films are best during awards season the public…
    I support like i hope most do those who are vocal therefore for and especially against bad decisions oscar make. With the fools hope that one day oscar stand up and take note that they are GRAVELY TREMENDOUSLY betraying their core film base- you esp antoinette remind me of me as recent as literally a few mnths ago so forgive me for the following but i have to be honest on where oscar stands with not only me bt effectively represents the growing minority.
    For remember antoinette when in life something gets you down over and over and over again there only so much horseshit you can take and the same applies for oscar.
    They have dismally miserably failed the public trust test. They undermine innovative and popular and critically acclaimed films. for as long as i followed from 1998 right through to today…this is the first oscar season i sorry to say that i cannot bear to watch not just cos ‘my’ film is not gonna win this year it lincoln, last year or the year before it was ‘avatar’ and before that ‘the dark knight’ but the sheer volume of neglect of common sense decisions to advance oscar as a film institution it deserves to be not what it denigrates itself to be today is alarming in disturbing for not just any film devotee in myself and so many others bt they have ruined the public goodwill where the public once cared for oscar.
    And it their own damn fault they deserve to be condemened evebn mildly abused. for how would you react whensomething or someone pisses you off over and over you give chances and every year or every day you get less and less patient and more and more frustrated. in oscars case it measured in years.
    For me, the only high points since 1998 and i deeply suspect this represents many others in the movie going pblic who watch during awards season,
    the films that were justified in winning best pictyr for me were: Gladiator, Return of the King the Departed and i was torn when hurt locker won but i embraced it even though it was with a heavy heart for which i would have preferred avatar. But milliondollar baby Crash, Slumdog Millionaire no country for old men most in the public at best only half embraced such films and on balance oscar destroyed gradually year by year public good will.
    When a grand once pblicly revered artistic institution violates it core principle it was founded with that is innovation popularity and acclaim where the latter trumps the rest in today’s oscar more often than not.
    And when films that most supported like saving private ryan the dark knight- and rises- why the hell it was not a contender is beyond me this year!, aviator, munich, avatar all either lose or get unjustly snubbed – ther only so much passionate film fans will take antoinette and that why i say as follows: and why pple have a right to be vocal againt films or even for them you see now?
    So this is just shocking Kushner overlooked for a screenplay that was tenfold at least more accomplished, smarter and far and away innovative to the shit that the supposed most undeserved inevitable Oscar winner in Argo which is to answer u earlier question sasha already determined Argo will b a also ran a fuked up wasted opportunity to embrace the best of the best that film is Lincoln not Argo. What a truckload of shithouse waste . Oscar season denegrates itself to. They should start calling themselves the mediocre arts and motion picture sciences.

  63. How come most of you are all so stupid? God only knows, and we know that you even believe in that entity that is called God. We have better schools. No God, thanks.

    Miaow! Tero’s doing all his work and all mine too today! This thread deserves an award, never mind the publicists!

  64. Saturn nods are strange. Why acknowledge Argo and ZD30 but not their direction and scripts? It comes off very sausage-fest in the director category, ignoring Bigelow, with genre film bona fides, while rewarding Peter Jackson for just milking $$$$ for The Hobbit. Also Letts’ KJ script was the weak link of the film. Also, Les Miz nod?

  65. Unlikely hood

    Tero if you don’t believe in God let me introduce you to an awards ceremony you’ll love, it’s called the Oscars. With almost no blacks favored to win, you’re very unlikely to hear the word “God” from the stage.

    I lived in Europe for years, you don’t see me bragging about it. Paddy don’t join the boor patrol.

  66. Tero Heikkinen

    I don’t mind the word. To me it’s just a word, in English I also say Thank God for lack of better words, but I know it’s ridiculous. Mind as well say Thank Nothing.

  67. Tero Heikkinen

    I’m sure that in USA there are millions of atheists who are afraid to say it out loud. I mean, do all politicians really believe in God? No way. It’s easy to like Hollywood, because it is very secular.

    I do like old churches, though. We have them, and they are empty. I hate the institution that violates human rights, spreads AIDS (Catholics), hate speech etc…

  68. Paddy don’t join the boor patrol.

    Bitch, I am the boor patrol!

    … What’s a boor patrol?

    Also, I sure don’t brag about being European. I’m Northern Irish. That’s almost as bad as being American!

  69. Come on, Paddy. At least you have good beer, brown bread and damn good accents.

  70. CMG, I hope that remark about the Saturn directors category wasn’t a diss of Joss Whedon because he absotively, posolutely, 100% EARNED that nomination. I’d have taken him over Lee on the Oscar directtor short list. What he did with The Avengers was nothing short of a miracle. He had to integrate story lines from 5 different characters and three different films, give everyone their moments in the sun, craft a memorable, wisecracking villain (and was Tom Hiddleston a find or what as Loki?), with state of the art visual effects…Whedon got his masters’ degree last year and deserves to be included In the upper echelon of top flight U.S, directors.

    Nolan, despite TDKR being 15-20 minutes too long, and an embarrassing time continuity gaffe in one of his set pieces (Bane’s takeover of the Gotham Stock Exchange in day, pursued by Batman minutes later, but at night,), the good outweighed the bad. In the end, there was too much baggage for Bigelow to overcome. I still maintain Gary Ross got hosed big-time. Wish Harrelson, Banks and Sutherland got invites…

  71. And big dicks, Kane

    … or so I’m told…

  72. Thank God I’m 3/4 Irish…man I need to go back there again.

  73. PaulH, Whedon is a good, creative filmmaker and how he rehabilitated the Black Widow character in The Avengers was great. I still think the writing was the strength of The Avengers, however. The Hobbit and Jackson are ridiculous choices that seems to just be a validation pick that this is still a genre awards list. But 48 fps was a major bust and it should have just been a stand alone film. Johnson’s script is more interesting than his direction but I am also cool with him and Friedkin (who got great performances from an inconsistent, tonally schizophrenic script) as the choices.

    I’m a bigger fan of Nolan than most and do not mind his nomination, even if his political naivete was getting progressively more problematic in the trilogy, but Sam Mendes also could have taken that spot with Skyfall.

  74. Tero,

    This clip made me think of you:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tikaHHRIWM

    Julia Sugarbaker’s dissection of average Americans made me think of your comments. Not sure why. But, it’s a funny scene. And, it’s a travesty that Dixie Carter was never nominated for an Emmy, let alone won, for her portrayal of the Georgian powerhouse.

  75. Christophe

    Tero,

    I know one thing that is even dumber than believing in God and it’s to mistake the church and all its abuses for God and Jesus. In a sense, i think the catholic church and all the other kinds of churches (except maybe the buddhist church, if there ever was such a thing) have comitted blasphemy and pushed good people to atheism by preaching hate and prejudice when the most basic teachings of their religions pointed to peace and love. Then again, other atheists just believe they’re smarter than God which reflects a basic misunderstanding of what/where/who God really is, but we’ll all know the truth someday, not just from books or hearsay, but experiencing the living truth directly in our own hearts, and it will set us free.

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