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Tag: Best Actor Oscar (71-80 of 106)

Oscar roundup: October 2

a_serious_man_lThere’s only one film opening this weekend with any awards chances to talk about: The Coen brothers’ latest quirkfest, A Serious Man. Their last two films either won Best Picture (No Country for Old Men) or at least managed a Best Comedy nod from the Golden Globes (Burn After Reading); this one will probably fall in the middle somewhere.

Best Bets

Best Original Screenplay: With most of the season’s big guns falling in the adapted category, the Coens should have no trouble earning their fourth screenplay nomination.


Best Picture: The critical response has been phenomenal so far. But the film needs audience support as well to go the distance.

Best Director: Can the Coens return to the race just two years after winning this category? If several of the late-year releases disappoint, quite possibly.

Best Actor, Michael Stuhlbarg: As they did with Fargo‘s William H. Macy, the Coens have given a theater veteran his big-screen breakthrough. Stuhlbarg is priceless as the movie’s harried hero.

Long shot

Best Supporting Actor, Richard Kind or Fred Melamed: These two character actors play Stuhlbarg’s brother and the man who steals his wife, respectively. One of them will have to emerge as the stronger contender to have a shot.

Photo credit: Wilson Webb

Oscar roundup: September 25

Beginning today, I’m relaunching my weekly “Oscar Roundup” feature, where I run down the awards chances for all of the films opening each week. To begin, we’ve got Capitalism: A Love Story, The Boys Are Back, and Coco Before Chanel.


Best Bet

Best Documentary: Michael Moore has won this category before, and his politics seem to be in line with the current Hollywood zeitgeist.


Best Picture: His chances may have improved with this year’s supersized Best Picture race, but the film probably lacks the reviews to go the distance.



Best Actor, Clive Owen: He’s been recognized in the supporting category before (for Closer) and shows a different side of himself as a laissez-faire father. But will he be overshadowed by showier competition? Check out my OscarWatch interview with Owen here.



Best Actress, Audrey Tautou: An adorable French actress playing the lead in a period biopic? It worked for Marion Cotillard. But the Amélie star has amassed virtually no buzz for her performance.

Clive Owen: Is 'The Boys Are Back' his Best Actor shot?

I met Clive Owen a few years back to interview him for Derailed, his thriller with Jennifer Aniston, and found him to be perfectly pleasant but not the most vibrant guy in the world. But when he showed up for his OscarWatch interview for The Boys Are Back, there was an undeniable light in his eyes from the moment he walked in the door. Owen has reason to be enthusiastic—he gives the most nuanced and emotional performance of his career in the drama directed by Scott Hicks (Shine) about a sportswriter trying to raise two boys after the sudden death of his wife. Because the role is so quiet, he’s not exactly a slam dunk for his first Best Actor nomination (he scored a supporting nod for Closer) but he’s definitely “in the conversation,” as they say. The film opens tomorrow; in the meantime, he talks about why he wanted to play a dad, how he bonded with his 7-year-old costar, and whether his two daughters wish he were more like his carefree character. Check out the interview after the jump. READ FULL STORY

Toronto: The 5 biggest Oscar boosts

Gabourey-Sidibe_lNow that the Toronto International Film Festival is officially over, here are the five movies, actors, and filmmakers who got the most potent shots of Oscar adrenaline from their time up north.

1. Up in the Air. Of all the films that premiered at Toronto or Telluride, Jason Reitman’s dramatic comedy emerged as the strongest across-the-board contender. At this point, nods for picture, director, actor (George Clooney), supporting actress (certainly Anna Kendrick, possibly Vera Farmiga as well), and adapted screenplay seem like sure things. Watch me and Missy Schwartz discuss the film in our Toronto weekend wrap-up.

2. Gabourey Sidibe (pictured here). With her attention-grabbing costar Mo’Nique absent from the festival, the titular star of the audience award winner Precious (a certain Best Picture nominee) had her chance to shine…and saw her Best Actress chances soar.

3. Colin Firth and Julianne Moore. The never-nominated Brit and our own four-time nominee share a knockout centerpiece scene in Tom Ford’s gorgeous drama A Single Man. Harvey Weinstein, who definitely has a eye for Oscar-baiting performances, liked what he saw and bought the film for a December release. Here’s Part 1 of my OscarWatch interview with Firth.

4. Clive Owen. His leading-man turn in The Boys Are Back is decidedly on the subtle side, but fabulous trade reviews out of Toronto put the past Supporting Actor nominee (Closer) squarely in the running for a Best Actor nod. Watch me and Missy talk about his chances here.

5. Joel and Ethan Coen. Two years after winning Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay for No Country for Old Men, the brilliant brothers raised some eyebrows by going the star-free route with A Serious Man. But their surprisingly personal film was extremely well-received by critics and audiences alike. Especially given the relative dearth of Best Original Screenplay candidates this season, they could find themselves with a return invite to the Kodak.

Are you as into this stuff as I am? Then follow me on Twitter (@davekarger) for more.

Photo credit: Mark Blinch/Reuters/Landov

Matt Damon on the best scenes in 'The Informant!'

By now about a million of you have seen The Informant!, the fifth collaboration between Matt Damon and Steven Soderbergh as actor and director. In the last installment of our OscarWatch interview (check out Part 1 and Part 2 as well), Damon talks about how the Oscar-winning filmmaker guided him through the comedy’s most pivotal scenes. Watch the video after the jump, and don’t forget to follow me on Twitter (@davekarger) for updates all season long. READ FULL STORY

Will Matt Damon ever get another Oscar nod?

It’s hard to believe that it’s been 12 years since Matt Damon’s first and only Oscar nomination for acting, for 1997’s Good Will Hunting. But even though he’s delivered several strong performances since then (The Talented Mr. Ripley, anyone?), the Academy doesn’t seem to have noticed. I’m curious to see whether his riotous performance in Steven Soderbergh’s The Informant! (in theaters today) changes any of that. True, it’s a comedy, so that’s one strike against his chances. But he is playing a real guy, and of course there’s the weight gain in his favor. But most of all, it’s a uniquely funny performance that took real guts to pull off. Here’s more of our OscarWatch interview, after the jump. And the obligatory “follow me on Twitter” (@davekarger) request. READ FULL STORY

Colin Firth on his Venice Best Actor win

I met with a jet-lagged Colin Firth yesterday in Toronto, fresh from his Best Actor victory at the Venice film festival for his impeccable lead performance in Tom Ford’s A Single Man. In the drama, Firth, best known for his roles in Pride & Prejudice and Bridget Jones’s Diary, plays a college professor, mourning the loss of his partner, who considers ending his own life. At the InStyle/Hollywood Foreign Press Association party tonight in Toronto, Harvey Weinstein told me he intends to release the film on Dec. 4; in the meantime, here’s Firth talking about his career-best performance.

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More Toronto Coverage:

‘Paranormal Activity': Prepare to be freaked out

Weinstein Co. picks up 'A Single Man'

The Weinstein Co. has bought Tom Ford’s directorial debut A Single Man in a seven-figure deal, with the intention of giving it an Oscar-qualifying release this year. The ultra-stylish drama, starring Colin Firth and Julianne Moore, had its North American premiere last night at the Toronto International Film Festival. Weinstein already has NineInglourious Basterds, and The Road on its Oscar slate. I’d call Firth (Best Actor) and Moore (Best Supporting Actress) the two strongest shots at nominations from the film.

Matt Damon on Liberace and how to destroy Clooney

When I had the chance to chat with Matt Damon about his hilarious performance in The Informant! (out this Friday), I couldn’t resist asking him two burning questions: 1) Is he really going to play Liberace’s boyfriend opposite Michael Douglas in an upcoming biopic? And 2) how does he intend to slay his pal and Best Actor competitor George Clooney during the Oscar season? Hear about all his evil plans below. And follow me on Twitter (@davekarger) for instant Oscar updates.

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More Toronto Coverage:

‘Paranormal Activity': Prepare to be freaked out

Toronto: 'Up in the Air' plays for press

I’m just out of the press and industry screening of Up in the Air, and I have to say the movie lives up to all the hype. It’s equal parts comedy and drama with extremely timely themes and fantastic performances, especially from George Clooney and up-and-comer Anna Kendrick. To my surprise, Kendrick seems to have a bigger role than the also impressive Vera Farmiga, who plays Clooney’s love interest in the film. The humor in Jason Reitman’s third film is quite sharp (I can’t recall the last time a joke elicited applause from a group of journalists), but it definitely gives way to a more somber tone near the end. Particularly with this season’s 10 Best Picture slots, Up in the Air seems like a great bet for a nomination at this early date.

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