It’s that time of year again. You’ve watched dozens of movies, you’ve seen plenty of “For Your Consideration” ads, and you’ve heard everyone’s reasons why one film or another deserves to win. There’s a lot going through your mind; maybe you’re confused. No worries. Once again, Limité’s Film Team is ready to step up with its picks in some of the most hotly contested categories. Read below, then mark your ballots with confidence.
Often, this time of year, Oscar-nominated films attempt to drum up last-minute support with special live events—whether it be a live musical performance by the cast of Frozen or a Mary Poppins sing-along event for Saving Mr. Banks. These events usually highlight an aspect of the film that’s nominated (or would be potentially nominated), which is why I found it interesting that Birdman‘s score was recently performed live in LA during a screening of the film.
Since the film’s release in November, the unique jazz drum score has reverberated in viewers’ minds. The Golden Globe- and BAFTA Award-nominated music by Antonio Sánchez was famously disqualified for Oscar consideration because it samples about 17 minutes of previously recorded classical music (an Oscar no-no). Despite his ineligibility, Sánchez took to his drum kit for the live performance last night at the ACE Hotel. Although the performance does nothing to support the film’s (nonexistent) chances in the Original Score category, perhaps it does help further boost Birdman‘s profile, keeping it top of mind for voters who are currently filling in their ballots. And with only one other film acting as serious competition for Best Picture, Birdman can use the added boost to make it to the Dolby’s stage on Oscar Sunday.
This morning, the nominations for the 87th Academy Awards were announced. View all nominees here.
If you’re like me, you watch as many of the nominated films as possible before the ceremony (on February 22 this year). Got some catching up to do? Watch 11 of the nominated films, currently on Netflix.
This year, Oscar’s always-a-bridesmaid, Julianne Moore, goes for her fifth nomination. And among all of this year’s leading ladies, Moore seems to be a lock for her first—and much overdo—win. In fact, hers is one of the few categories that’s nearly a sure thing at this stage of the Oscar season. (Let’s hope I didn’t just jinx it.)
Playing a linguistics professor with early-onset Alzheimer’s, Moore’s performance in Still Aliceis ripe for awards consideration, and, indeed, it has received several positive notices and recognition. Among her accolades, Moore has already won Best Actress from the Gotham Awards and National Board of Review, among others, and she counts a Golden Globe nomination (two, actually—the other for Maps to the Stars) and SAG Award nomination among her accolades.
Still Alice also stars Alec Baldwin, Kristen Stewart, and Kate Bosworth, and opens January 16. Oscar nominations will be announced the morning of January 15.
If you’re anything like me, you make a point to watch as many “Oscar films” as possible before the February ceremony. To help me with this, I assemble a checklist of sorts every fall, ordering each film by release date. To that end, listed below are some of this year’s biggest prospects that are either currently in theatres or set to be released in the upcoming weeks. In the event that I’ve seen one of the films listed, I included my rating out of 10.
This morning, the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) announced the nominees for its 24th annual Gotham Independent Film Awards, honoring the best in independent cinema. The Gothams are regarded as the first major award show of the awards season. Richard Linklater’s 12-year odyssey, Boyhood, leads the pack with four nominations, including Best Feature.
It’s not every day I get the opportunity to fly out to LA for the Oscars, so I’d be remiss if I didn’t post about my experience at this year’s Academy Awards. My friend Stephanie and I ventured to Hollywood primarily for our Red Carpet experience, but we took our extended weekend to meet with friends, see some sites, and tour the Paramount Pictures studios. Still, our Oscar Fan Experience was the weekend’s crown jewel, so I’ll be focusing this post on that.
Our call time was 10am and we arrived a bit early, so we hung out at a donut shop nearby for our “pre-gaming.” (I had been to LA just a few years earlier and didn’t notice all of the donut shops. This time, however, that’s all I could see—for miles and miles. And these aren’t fancy, gourmet donut shops; these are hole-in-the-wall, cheapo places.)
In the past few weeks, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has revealed the shortlists for all short film categories for the 2013 Oscars. Official nominations will be announced on January 16, 2014. Here’s what will be vying for a nomination in all three categories:
“Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn’t Me),” Esteban Crespo, director (Producciones Africanauan)
“Avant Que De Tout Perdre (Just before Losing Everything),” Xavier Legrand, director, and Alexandre Gavras, producer (KG Productions)
“Dva (Two),” Mickey Nedimovic, director, and Henner Besuch, director of photography (Filoufilm Dani Barsch)
“Helium,” Anders Walter, director, and Kim Magnusson, producer (M & M Productions)
“Kush,” Shubhashish Bhutiani, director (Red Carpet Moving Pictures)
“Pitääkö Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?),” Selma Vilhunen, director, and Kirsikka Saari, screenwriter (Tuffi Films)
Each year, both for Oscar and Emmy season, The Hollywood Reporter releases a series of candid and informative roundtable interviews with some of the film and TV industries’ hottest and most respected talent—all of whom are in awards contention for their most recent works. This season, the focus is on movies and the men and women who bring them to life. Visit THR.comto watch or read. So far, the following roundtables have been conducted (with more to come, including some of this year’s actress contenders):
Directors (image above)
L to R: Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave), Paul Greengrass (Captain Phillips), David O. Russell (American Hustler), Ben Stiller (The Secret Life of Walter Mitty), Alfonso Cuarón (Gravity), Lee Daniels (Lee Daniels’ The Butler)
The fall is my favorite season for several reasons: the weather, the holidays, the foliage, the movies—oh, the movies. This is when studios release their best contenders for Oscar glory, more than four months away. Every year, I aim to watch all of the Oscar hopefuls before nominations are announced (this year on January 16, 2014).
Here is my second-annual list of this year’s major contenders in various categories, along with release dates.