I have been all that good at predicting the BAFTAs. They are like herding cats in many ways, unless they have aligned themselves with Oscar, which happens on occasion, and especially has been recently since Oscar pushed the date back. Very little wiggle room.  A consensus vote tells us which films are getting the popular vote at  a given moment in time.  And that’s what we’re faced with now and it looks like Argo has that vote locked up.  At least, with the BAFTAs, but maybe the Oscars too – who knows. By this point I might even have to add, who cares.  The BAFTAs will likely be a day for Argo fans to celebrate because they nominated Ben Affleck in the acting category, which tells us they really liked the movie.

But this guy at the Guardian believes that the most nominations might mean something at the BAFTAs – it didn’t mean anything at the Globes, nor the Critics Choice and probably not at the Oscars either — and what a shame that is.  He keeps hope alive over there at the Guardian, even calling Lincoln “the favourite.” But alas.

The real question on many people’s minds is whether Emmanuelle Riva can pick up some buzz at the BAFTAs. Remember, she’s 85. Oscar campaigning is going to be very difficult for her. I suspect she is rather amused by the dog and pony that it is. You live that long and almost everything amuses you. It would be a funny screenplay idea to follow her around with all of the publicists trying to talk her into doing stuff to get the win.  Maybe it is a high honor to win an Oscar. Maybe, in the end, it might not be, not after all we know about them.

It is a little depressing to see these awards always lean towards Oscar.  I am sure the BAFTA could unhinge themselves from Oscar if they wanted to but you can’t get the same attention from the press or the public unless you’re part of the “contest.”   And so this is the house that Jack built.  And we live in it.

Let’s go through the categories one by one.


  • Argo –Sasha Stone, Marshall Flores
  • Les Miserables
  • Life of Pi, Ryan Adams
  • Lincoln
  • Zero Dark Thirty

Argo should handily win since it has all of the buzz right now. I have to stop predicting Lincoln to win because at this point it is no longer good for my heart to do so.  I have to force myself to say Argofuckyourself.  ARGO.  ARGO will win.  ARGO.  Alt. Life of Pi.

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One of the big awards shows, among many, inserted into the awards race now is the BAFTA, the British Academy of Film and Television Awards.  When I first started, in 1999, no one in the Oscar race paid any attention to the BAFTAs because they were held after the Oscars.  This put a healthy divide between the two groups and really did seem to mean — this is what THEY thought, rather than they trying to influence or match the Oscars, as most groups now do.   But they switched their date in 2000 to be held before the Oscars and now they’re just one of the precursors on the road to Oscar.

The British invasion is a notable strain that runs through the Oscars and always has done.  While America has, I think, produced some of the best film directors in the world, the Brits really influence the actors branch, the biggest voting block in the Academy.  They used to be known for not so much matching Oscar as being able to push through movies like The Pianist, or an acting contender like Marion Cotillard.  But once Oscar shifted its date from March back to February, and all of the awards shows then shifted their dates back, you had near-uniform voting across the board.   You have to go back to 2008 to find a year that didn’t match up with Oscar’s Best Picture when Atonement won.

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Here’s the brand new trailer for Pedro Almodovar’s Los Amantes Pasajeros. (thanks to Jesus Alonso)

The question came up on Twitter yesterday, What if Michael Haneke Won the BAFTA for Bes Director. Made me curious to see how often the BAFTA have awarded international directors (directors who aren’t from the UK or US or Aus whose native language isn’t English). The Oscars have only done so 6 times since 1970

1975 – Miloš Forman – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
1984 – Miloš Forman – Amadeus
1987 – Bernardo Bertolucci – The Last Emperor
2002 – Roman Polanski – The Pianist
2005 – Ang Lee – Brokeback Mountain
2011 – Michel Hazanavicius – The Artist

The BAFTAs are much more open to honoring international directors. Twice as frequently as the Oscars, 12 times since 1970 (roughly 29% of the time). BAFTA’s impressive list of International Directors, after the cut.

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(via Deadline)

Best Picture
Farewell, My Queen
Camille Redouble
In The House
Rust & Bone
Holy Motors
What’s In A Name

Best Director
Benoît Jacquot, Farewell, My Queen
Michael Haneke, Amour
Noémie Lvovsky, Camille Redouble
François Ozon, In The House
Jacques Audiard, Rust & Bone
Leos Carax, Holy Motors
Stéphane Brizé, Quelques Heures De Printemps

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Watch two of the dumbest presenters and one of the smartest winners at the Globes after the cut.

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The USC Scripter nominees are:


Beasts of the Southern Wild
Life of Pi
Perks of Being a Wallflower
Silver Linings Playbook

–A tie resulted in six sets of finalists for the 2013 honor, rather than the typical five.

The finalists are, in alphabetical order by film title:

  • Joshuah Bearman, author of the article “The Great Escape,” Antonio J. Mendez, author of The Master of Disguise, and screenwriter Chris Terrio, for Argo
  • For Beasts of the Southern Wild, dramatist Lucy Alibar, who wrote the play Juicy and Delicious, and screenwriter Benh Zeitlin, who co-wrote the screenplay with Alibar
  • Novelist Yann Martel and screenwriter David Magee for Life of Pi
  • Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, and screenwriter Tony Kushner for Lincoln
  • Stephen Chbosky, author of the novel Perks of Being a Wallflower, as well as the screenplay based upon the book
  • For Silver Linings Playbook, author Matthew Quick and screenwriter David O. Russell

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In case you missed them or just want to relive them, NBC has generously made available all the major highlights from Sunday night’s Golden Globe Awards ceremony. Here’s the opening repartee with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.


Ben Affleck, Jessica Chastain, Daniel Day-Lewis, Jennifer Lawrence, Hugh Jackman, Quentin Tarantino, Anne Hathaway, Christoph Waltz, Michael Haneke, and the Best Picture production teams behind Les Mis and Argo after the cut.

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Globes ratings best in six years [EW]



Torture is too important an issue to allow a film such as “Zero Dark Thirty” to be the final arbiter. The facts need to play that role. I call on the Senate Intelligence Committee to release its report as soon as possible in order to end U.S.-sponsored torture forever.

Rev. Richard L. Killmer, a Presbyterian minister, is the Executive Director of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture calls on real government action, not whipped up hysteria [WP]


Seth MacFarlane tweets:
Tommy Lee Jones laughing uproariously at Wiig and Ferrell. I’m told this is also his sex face”
“It doesn’t matter how I do, Oscar hosts always get thrashed.”


And then this:





Django and race relations:


Django Unchained, the new movie by Quentin Tarantino is playing to mixed reviews. Whites will view and review this movie one-way, and blacks will view it another way. It is not a traditional film, and it confronts black images and stereotypes head on. It forces an honest discussion on America’s race relations.” [HP]


The Carpetbagger dives into Jodie Foster’s speech, what she did and didn’t say.

“Being an artist is a way of saying, I am here, and this is what I stand for,” she said. “And I will never be tired of that.” [NYT]




The Golden Globes, like the Critics Choice,  had their ballots turned in before the Oscar nominations.  That meant that they reflected the moment just before the buzz shifted.  Argo won big at the Critics Choice and it won big at the Globes, taking Best Picture Drama and Best Director. But Les Miserables actually won the most Golden Globes. Imagine, if you will, outstanding Oscar ballots today.  If Oscar ballots had been turned in after the DGA and after the Globes, there’s a good chance that, at the very least, Ben Affleck and Tom Hooper would have been nominated for Best Director. Such is one of the many odd twists and turns of this race.

It’s probably fairly likely that Argo could have built up momentum from this moment in time that might have carried it through to the Oscar win. Come to that, Argo might still win in a total freak show year never before seen in Oscar history; even Driving Miss Daisy had the distinction of A) having no DGA nor Oscar nor Globe nomination for Director and B) was placed in the comedy category.  Argo is only missing the Oscar nomination for Director. It’s entirely possible that film can be the one that defies history in this very strange year.

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Predict the Golden Globes! Movies — the winners, with 12:

Nicholas Fowler
Marco (mwd149)
Daniel Castaneda
Ryan Paterson
Brendan Walsh
Brian Clores
Nikita Pavlov

With 11

Emanuele D’Aniello
Sergio Montes
Jeremy Smith
Travis Carr
Jack Mahan
J.D. Eisinger
Luis Lopez
Travis Dukelow
Tomasz Matalowski

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Sasha talks about Jodie’s speech in the post above.

Jodie Foster gave an instantly legendary speech when accepting the Cecil B. DeMille award at the Golden Globes tonight. But although it was rambling and possibly a little batty, it was different to most legendary awards season speeches in one important way–it was sincere and meaningful. (via Vulture)

Read the full transcript after the cut.

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Best Picture: Argo
Best Director: Ben Affleck, Argo
Best Actress: Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty!
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Best Picture, Musical/Comedy: Les Miserables
Best Foreign Language Film: Amour, Michael Haneke!
Best Actress Comedy: Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
best Actor Musical: Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables
Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Best Screenplay: Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained
Best Original Score: Mychael Danna, Life of Pi
Best Song: Adele, Skyfall
Best Animated Feature: Brave

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LIVESTREAMING Golden Globes here


In case you want a printable ballot, here is one  PDF form. Thanks AJ!

My No Guts, No Glory for Tonight:

1.  Argo wins Score
2. Kon-tiki wins Best Foreign Film

I think I picked the only No Guts, No Glory in the bunch. Everything else is probable.


The Golden Globes are coming off a really terrible Critics Choice broadcast. They were happy because their numbers were good — and let it be said if there is one thing of value if you’re a broadcast critic, it’s television ratings.   There is no point in taking them that seriously, after all, many of them aren’t critics and some are even awards bloggers out to strategize the race from within. They are to be taken, as most awards are, with a grain of salt.

Tonight will put some films to a tougher test — the presumed winners in each category face formidable challengers. Since the race has had three dramatic shifts in the narratives, that all came down to the director category, Best Picture seems wide open, even still.

1. Tom Hooper and David O. Russell missing the crucial Golden Globe nomination for Director.
2. David O. Russell missing the even more crucial DGA nod.
3. David O. Russell, Michael Haneke and Benh Zeitlin getting into the Oscar race for director but Ben Affleck and Kathryn Bigelow not.

It goes without saying but should be said again that there has never been a year like 2012 in 65 years of DGA/Oscar history

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We have just two days to put the Golden Globes to bed. I feel like this is still a very very wide open race.  In the awards bubble, they can’t get behind a single Lincoln win, not even at the Critics Choice, while “out there” in the rest of America, Lincoln is tops.  Everybody is talking about it except, of course, those who vote on awards. Funny, ain’t it?  Usually that’s reserved to movies that are deemed too genre-y for Oscar but this year? It’s that talky political smart person’s movie dumb America wasn’t supposed to get.

Meanwhile, the upset over Argo and Zero Dark Thirty could also make this race turn out differently.  If, say, either Ben Affleck or Kathryn Bigelow wins the DGA over Steven Spielberg and Ang Lee, that could signal a potential split vote scenario where Argo or Zero Dark Thirty wins Best Picture and someone else wins Best Director, like Michael Haneke or even Benh Zeitlin, or David O. Russell, for that matter.

Either way, that people were starting to lean Argo’s way (at least among critics and bloggers) we don’t yet know the ultimate outcome.  The Oscars pulled the rug out from underneath the fairly predictable awards race and suddenly made it UNPREDICTABLE and that has made plenty of people angry. I don’t know how anyone can complain with such an interesting lineup for Best Director – yes, I know, we had the race set in stone already. We knew how it was supposed to go and then it went a different way.  It hasn’t gone THIS way in a very very long time.  Are the awards to confirm what we think or are they supposed to tell us what they think? I have never known to the answer to that one. One person’s masterpiece is another’s MEHsterpiece.

I will be putting down my predictions later.  I know, try to contain your excitement! In the meantime, here you go.


Seeking to be less predictable, the BAFTAs this year decided to forego the longstanding 2-step nomination process with their famously fascinating long list that always preceded the final short list. Unpredictable means more room for unexpected surprises but it’s also less transparent. The Oscars and BAFTAs are both flying blind this year. You can achieve the same exciting sensation in your car if you fog up the windshield, drain your brake fluid, then take down all the road signs and guardrails on the highway. Who knows what unpredictable accidents might happen! Buckle up! The new ballot procedure throws all our prediction models into disarray as well. Since the voting is so radically different this year, all the trusty historical precedents have been thrown out the window.


  • ARGO Grant Heslov, Ben Affleck, George Clooney
  • LES MISÉRABLES Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Debra Hayward, Cameron Mackintosh
  • LIFE OF PI Gil Netter, Ang Lee, David Womark
  • LINCOLN Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy
  • ZERO DARK THIRTY Mark Boal, Kathryn Bigelow, Megan Ellison


  • ANNA KARENINA Joe Wright, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Paul Webster, Tom Stoppard
  • THE BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL John Madden, Graham Broadbent, Pete Czernin, Ol Parker
  • LES MISÉRABLES Tom Hooper, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Debra Hayward, Cameron Mackintosh, William Nicholson, Alain Boublil, Claude-Michel Schönberg, Herbert Kretzmer
  • SEVEN PSYCHOPATHS Martin McDonagh, Graham Broadbent, Pete Czernin
  • SKYFALL Sam Mendes, Michael G. Wilson, Barbara Broccoli, Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, John Logan

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The press release announcing the BAFTA nominations on January 9th has just been sent out. They give a time, 7:35, but I don’t know what time zone they mean by that.

The BAFTA noms will livestreamed at and full nominations at 7:45. Again, I am not yet sure what time zone we’re talking about.

What to look for in the BAFTAs are potential trends up or down for certain films.

Expect to see: a big splash for Skyfall, a lot of nominations for Les Miserables (conversely, if those aren’t there, as expected), whether the Brits have gone for Lincoln or not; there’s this notion that the film might not play internationally.  Where Zero Dark Thirty will sit — they gave Bigelow and Boal a big win for The Hurt Locker.

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For the first time in probably their entire history, the DGA will announce their five nominees after the Oscar ballots have been turned in. That means that they can’t be counted to on as a “true north” this time.  Some people don’t think they ever were but I have a feeling they lend legitimacy to an otherwise fringe contender.  I could be wrong, of course.

The DGA membership is huge — 14, 500 members, where Oscar’s directing branch is much smaller, less than 500.   That accounts for the disconnect between the DGA and Oscar most years.  You can easily figure out three of the Best Director contenders this year.  Right now, the hot three are:

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