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BAFTA oddsmakers Split between “12 Years a Slave” and “Gravity

New York Magazine

Just checked the Oddsmakers website in England. The British are a betting nation. And therefore, you have to take their betting there seriously. As they do.
With the BAFTAS coming up this weekend, it’s instructive to find out that “Gravity” is the odds on favorite to win for “Best British Film” a category that pertains to it being shot mainly there. And for which “12 Years a Slave” not nominated. I guess it means films that are made in England. Mainly London.
“12 Years a Slave” IS however the favorite for Best Picture. And then they split again, and have Alfonso Cuaron, a Mexican, winning over Brit Steve McQueen! Well that’s how all the awards have been coming down. Cuaron won the DGA. And we could see that split at the Oscar, too. That “12 Years…” wins Best Picture, but Cuaron wins Best Director.

The acting categories are interesting to me because they are always more influential than you’d think they’d be. Wavering voters in a close race like this year’s Best Actor certainly is And the oddsmakers are betting on Brit Chiwetel Ejiofor for “12 Years”! This it has to be noted is a competition where “Dallas Buyer’s Club” and Matthew McConaghey and Jared Leto, the presumed front-runners here in the States, it is thought by many, did not make the cut and were nominated nowhere.

So Chiwetel may get his chance to really sway voters with an emotioanl speech that will be seen around the world, just two days after the AMPAS ballots go out. This could have a HUGE impact at the Oscars. The same could be said for the Oddsmakers.com front-runner in Best Supporting Actor Michael Fassbender!

I’ve always been predicting those two towering performances. And of course, like everywhere else, Lupita Nyong’o(pictured above on New York Magazine’s cover this week) is the leading to win Best Supporting Actress.

Keep your eyes on http://www.awardsdaily.com who always have the BAFTA results FIRST.

This makes me feel happy for Chiwetel and Michael and Lupita, of course, but sad for McQueen. Whose work I feel is far superior to Cuaron’s…

And last but not least Cate Blanchett is favored to win Best Actress for “Blue Jasmine” despite recent events that I won’ even mention here.

This will make Cate and Lupita even more locked than they have been, and maybe help Chiwetel and Michael Fassbender win! Michael will make a very emotional speech. They all will. Keep your eyes on BAFTA Oscar Watchers!

Golden Globes Shockers! No OPRAH! No Forest Whittaker! No “August:Osage”! No “Mr.Banks”!

Well, color me shocked, but this mornings Golden Globe nominations contains more shocking snubs than even the SAG Award nominations did yesterday!

NO OPRAH WINFREY! For Supporting Actress for “The Butler”! No Forest Whitaker for “The Butler”! In fact, NOthing for “The Butler”! At All! And Harvey Weinstein has another morning shocker on his plate this morning! No “August:Osage County” nomination for Best Picture -Comedy of Musical! However, Meryl Streep did turn up in Best Actress:Comedy or Musical and Julia Roberts was simply nominated for Best Supporting Actress, as she was yesterday for “August:Osage County!”

That pretty much seals the deal for Roberts in that category, which is not split into TWO groups, allowing for as many as ten nominees. The other Best Supporting Actresses were, as expected, Lupita Nyong’O for “12 Years a Slave”, June Squibb for “Nebraska”, and Jennifer Lawrence for “American Hustle”.Sally Hawkins, the British actress who was truly excellent as Cate Blanchett’s put-upon, plain, working class sister in “Blue Jasmine” is the lady who replaced Oprah. I love Sally Hawkins and I’m happy for her.

But who says “No” to Lady O? The Hollywood Foreign Press Association(HFPA) that’s who!

The biggest winner was “12 Years a Slave” nominated for 7 Globes, Best Picture, Best Director(Steve McQueen), Best Actor Drama- Chiwetal Ejiafor, Best Supporting Actor ~ Michael Fassbender, Best Supporting Actress- Lupita Nyong’0, Best Screenplay and Best Score.

It tied with “American Hustle” with 7 also for Best Picture Comedy or Musical, Best Director (David O. Russell), Best Actor~Comedy or Musical (Christian Bale), Best Actress ~ Comedy or Musical ~ Amy Adams, Best Supporting Actor (Bradley Cooper) and Best Supporting Actress (Jennifer Lawrence).

My upcoming guest Oscar Isaac was nominated for Best Actor in a Musical/Comedy for his indelible leading role as a doomed folk singer in”Inside Llewyn Davis” and “Llewyn Davis” was also nominated for Best Picture Comedy/Musical. As well as Best Song “Please Mr Kennedy” which Oscar Isaac sang with Justin Timberlake in the Coen Bros. movie. It was not however nominated for either direction or writing.

My recent guest Berenice Bejo’s lovely French film “The Past” was nominated for Best Foreign Film but she was not nominated for her beautiful portrayal of a distracted Parisian housewife.

Bradley Cooper of “American Hustle” replaced yesterday’s posthumous Supporting Actor James Gandolfini for “Enough Said” although Gandolfini’s co-star Julia Louis-Dreyfuss scored as Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical.

The other big surprise was that Tom Hanks was AGAIN nominated for “Capt. Phillips” as Best Actor Drama, but that again, like with yesterday’s SAG awards his Walt Disney was ignored in Supp. Actor. Long shots Barkhad Abdi for Supporting for “Capt. Phillips” and Daniel Bruhl for “Rush” were again included in Supp. Actor. With stalwarts Fassbender and Jared Leto for “Dallas Buyers Club”. The surprise addition was Bradley Cooper for “American Hustle” who was not nominated for SAG.

And oh yes, the biggest Snub-ee of yesterday’s Screen Actor’s Guild Awards Robert Redford is back in it again as Best Actor Drama for “All is Lost”.

Complete list below (thx to http://www.Awardsdaily.com)

Here’s the complete list !

Best Picture, Drama
12 Years a Slave
Captain Phillips
Gravity
Philomena
Rush

Best Picture, Comedy
American Hustle
Her
Inside Llewyn Davis
Nebraska
Wolf of Wall Street

Best Director
Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity
Paul Greengrass, Captain Phillips
Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
Alexander Payne, Nebraska
David O. Russell, American Hustle

Best Actress
Cate Blanchett
Sandra Bullock
Judi Dench
Emma Thompson
Kate Winslet

Best Actor
Chiwetel Ejiofor
Idris Elba
Tom Hanks
Matthew McConaghey
Robert Redford

Best Actor Comedy
Christian Bale
Bruce Dern
Leonardo DiCaprio
Oscar Isaac
Joaquin Phoenix

Best Actress Comedy
Amy Adams
Julie Delpy
Greta Gerwig
Julia Louis Dreyfuss
Meryl Streep

Best Sup Actor
Barkhad Abdi
Daniel Bruhl
Bradley Cooper
Michael Fassbender
Jared Leto

Best Sup Actress
Sally Hawkins
Jennifer Lawrence
Lupita Nyong’o
Julia Roberts
June Squibb

Best Score
All is Lost
Mandela
Gravity,
Book Thief
12 Years a Slave

Best Original Song:
Atlas (Hunger Games)
Let it Go (Frozen)
Ordinary Love (Mandela)
Please Mr. Kennedy (Inside Llewyn Davis)
Sweeter Fiction (One Chance)

Best Screenplay
Her
Nebraska
Philomena
12 Years a Slave
American Hustle

Best Foreign Language Film
Blue is the Warmest
The Great Beauty
The Hunt
The Past
The Wind Rises

Best Animated Feature:
The Croods
Despicable Me 2
Frozen

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Beautiful Acceptance Speech by Michelle Williams @ Palm Springs Film Fest

Michelle Williams just gave one of the most moving, heartfelt speeches of her career, accepting her Desert Palm Actor Achievement Award honor at the Palm Springs Film Festival. You can watch it all at www.awardsdaily.com

Now you tell me if that isn’t an Oscar acceptance speech?! She was glowing, and intelligent, and touching. And she accepted the award on behalf of herself AND Marilyn Monroe!?! I was sooo moved by that mention!

And interestingly the last Four Desert Palm Achievement Award actor honorees and the last three out of four Best Actress winners went on to win at the Oscars! The Palm Springs Film Festival is becoming an essential Oscar step.

And of course, Michelle thanked Harvey Weinstein, as well she should!

And she thanked her publicist Myra Buxbaum, her personal publicist,  more than anyone else. WOW! Who does that?

But I like that. Sometimes (if not all the time) it’s the publicists, personal and otherwise, that are doing the heavy-lifting in the Oscar campaigns, and actually, sometimes, always, it’s the publicists who are on duty 24/7, Oscar campaigns or not. And they never get the credit they deserve.

And congrats to Myra! Let’s give credit where credit is due. And a long-time personal publicist, which is what Myra is to Michelle, sometimes becomes the star’s best friend.

Beautiful, beautiful speech! I’m glad Ryan Adams at Awardsdaily.com posted it! Kudos to all!

And that Marilyn mention, at JUST the right minute, at the end of her speech, just NAILED her Oscar win, IMHO.

I’ve never been to Palm  Springs or to its’ Film Festival, but it sounds more and more tempting, the more I hear about it. Jeff Wells, for instance, of www.hollywood-elsewhere.com is there and writing about it. Before he takes off for Sundance, as most people do. Me? I stay here.

Maybe next year. I never been to Palm Springs…Hmmm…Well I can dream, can’t I?

Parsing the BAFTA’s Long List’s Supporting Asterisks

Ok, we continue. With the BAFTA’s Long List and their Supporting Actor and Actress asterisks. OK. Once again I have to thank www.awardsdaily.com and Sasha Stone for putting up the whole she-bang so that we can react to it. In astonishment or wonder or delight or all of the above.

The BAFTAs once again, I know I’m repeating myself, but yes, this IS an odd system. I lived in England for many, many years and went to school there, too. So yes, EVERYthing is a bit odd. A bit eccentric. But the British LIKE eccentrics. In fact, they are cultivated there and even celebrated.

I was told when I lived there that I was a British eccentric, too. And I thought that they were perhaps overstating the case, but now, I think they were completely right.

But I digress…

So the BAFTAs publish this LONNNNNNNNNNNNNNG list first (see www.awardsdaily.com Everyone MUST see Awardsdaily. It’s a must-read, especially that now that we are in the heat of Awards season.) And for the first time this year, since I am now writing this blog on almost a daily basis.

I now have the platform to write about these little details, these minutae of the Awards Seasons. I guess this is something I’ve always wanted to do, but never did. But now I am. It’s like a damn bursting.

And I never noticed it before, but the BAFTAs put an asterisk on the names of five actors and actresses in their LONNNNNNG lists in each category, of who gets the most votes.

I don’t know why THEY JUST DON’T PUBLISH the darn nominations, goshdarnit! And let up the suspense. But then, that’s probably precisely WHY they do it this way. To build up suspense. Interest. It’s Hitchcockian. But then of course, Alfred Hitchcock was British.

So in Supporting Actor we have ~ WITH asterisks ~

ANDREW GARFIELD – For that movie I will not name. He also got a Golden Globe nod, but NOT a SAG, which is probably more significant, in that he IS British, and so you’d expect him to turn up here. And the Hollywood FOREIGN press would go for him, too. However, the ACTORS did not which is significant. Garfield was also long listed for “Never Let Go” but not asterisked. And that film, as well done as it was, bombed on both sides of the Atlantic. But Andrew is this year’s Hot Young Brit, so yes, he’ll be nominated here, but I don’t think he’s going to be nominated for an Oscar. And I don’t think he’ll win the Globe either.

BOB HOSKINS– “Made in Dagenham” A beautiful, sensitive performance as the union guy who’s SYMPATHETIC to the women strikers. And no,  not  a chance. No Globe nom seals it.

CHRISTIAN BALE-“The Fighter” Yes, of course, he’s in. And he’s also British. Yes, he is.

GEOFFREY RUSH– “The King’s Speech” Yes, of course he’s in. Superb career performance

MARK RUFFALO-“The Kid’s Are All Right”- Well, yes, of course. A SAG and a Golden Globe nom, too, make him ALMOST a slam-dunk. But if the BRITISH are voting for him, yes, I guess he’s in. Though will the SWORM(Straight White Old Rich Men) like his kinda negative male character back in Hollyweird. We’ll see.

Also listed but not asterisked Jeremy Renner for “The Town” the SAGs switched him out for Andrew Garfield. Last year the SAGs were 19 for 20 matching the Oscar Nominations. Except for Maggie Gyllenhaal and I HAD HER!!!!!

Vincent Cassel is long listed to in this category for “Black Swan.”AND NO MICHAEL DOUGLAS!

 Justin Timberlake was long-listed but no Armie Hammer! Is Armie the total dark horse now? Guess so. His Winklevoss Twins is STILL the Best Performance in that goddamn whatzit.I really thought they were two different actors playing both twins!! I DID!

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

This is the one category that even stumped the New York Times’ Oscar section. So much so, they didn’t even write about it in their OSCAR section of the Arts & Leisure section this past Sunday! This is reminding me of the year that Tilda Swinton won, in that it is a race that is all over the place. Tilda was the only actress to keep appearing on everyone’s lists, although she was never on the top. But she was on every list.

Do the BAFTAs asterisks clear things up? Well, yes, and no.

AMY ADAMS– gets an asterisk and for the first time we see her in this category this year WITHOUT Melissa Leo’s companion performance in “The Fighter” glued to her side. She’ll get an Oscar nomination for sure now. Though it looks like Leo MIGHT not get a BAFTA nod, when they FINALLY announce it. But it looks like Amy will. Good for her.

BARBARA HERSHEY-“Black Swan” !!!! Turning up for the first time on a serious list, she’s the performance that the Academy is more likely to honor than the SAG and Golden Globe nominated Mila Kunis. Hershey had a rangey, multi-faceted performance. Is SHE driving her daughter insane or is it vice versa? It’s the real central conflict and Hersey’s dynamic, frightening MOM-FROM-HELL makes it work. Think “What would the “Black Swan” be without her performance?” So she’s on her way to a BAFTA nod it seems. She’s got an asterisk.

HELENA BONHAM-CARTER – “The King’s Speech” Natch. The one to beat. Everybody LOVED the Queen Mum. EVERYBODY. And that love will lead Helena to the Bafta podium. She’s certainly going to be Oscar nominated and I hope will win.

LESLEY MANVILLE “Another Year” BRILLIANT performance, much lauded, FINALLY turns up somewhere. Neither the Globes, nor the SAGs nommed her. She was totally left out. Small British Indie, but the Academy LOVES Mike Leigh. Sony Pictures Classics has been campaigning her in lead and it’s been the biggest mistake of this year’s Oscars. BAFTA her own country says she’s Supporting. Maybe the Academy will too. And nominate her FINALLY. But so far she’s only won the National Board of Review for Best Actress then NOTHING ELSE. Poor Leslie Manville. ANOTHER victim of category confusion.

And FINALLY~ MIRANDA RICHARDSON in “Made in Dagenham” Much pre-season heat, but not nommed by either the Globes or the SAGS. BAFTA has asterisked her. So maybe she could turn up as a surprise, too.

LOOKS like there’s going to be A LOT of surprises in the Supporting Actress category. Melissa Leo is not even asterisked here. Though she’s listed. Ditto Jackie Weaver. Ditto Mila Kunis.

AND HAILEE STEINFELD IS LISTED AS A BEST ACTRESS CONTENDER!?!? Though she is NOT asterisked….So you see, she’s already splitting her own vote. The Academy might leave her off completely and I wish they would. But “True Grit” is a hit and it’s blowing up so big…

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