Back in the Day Posts: December 2006 awards season

Thursday, December 21, 2006
Awards Season...YIPPEEE!!! AKA Awesomeness pt. 8

Ok, listen up! This is probably the most exciting blog I'll write this year (safe enough to say with 9 days left in the year) so strap yourselves in! Also, you might want to ante up right now, I'm making bets on Award Winners and you don't want to be left out of the action now do you?! I didn't think so, but just to let you know, I took 20 bucks away from my own mother and I'm not afraid to do it to you! In all fairness she really had it coming, betting me that Meryl Streep wouldn't take a Golden Globe nomination...tsk, tsk, tsk, like taking candy from a baby! Anyway, so if you're in, you're in, flop card'sc oming...and on with the show.
For starters, let's go over the awards that have already been given out shall we? It's kind of like browsing at the buffet and skipping the salad one really pays attention to it anway.
New York Film Critics Awards:
I'll give you a brief overview. These awards tend to think of themselves as more avante garde, so you'll see titles like Pan'sLabyrinth (Warning: David Bowie is definitely NOT in this movie, nor are any muppets!) Half Nelson, (once again proving that Ryan Goslingis going to be this generation's most sought-after leading man, should he choose to be, but at least we're guaranteed a Captain Jack comeback if he wants to wait a while), United 93 ( You might have forgotten this summer release, but don't worry, the DVD is out now, if you'recurious), The Queen (Helen Mirren plays Queen Elizabeth coping privately and publicly with Princess Diana's death) and The Last Kingof Scotland (Forest Whitaker as African dictator Idi Amin). I almost forgot The Departed. So now that you know, let's move to the opposite coast...
Los Angeles Film Critics Awards:
Again, "independent film" is a kind of icon here, even though most of these films had pretty firm financial backing, so you might see some titles and say "when was this out?!" Technically these awards count,and I apologize to any recipient who may have a beef with this blog,but facts are facts and the fact is that the L.A.F.C.A's don't have Joan Rivers raspily shouting "who are you wearing...Melissa, get my botox I can feel my face!" So here are the highlights.
Best Picture:
Letters From Iwo Jima -Sadly, this film did not get the full release(yet) that it was due...however, here are the facts on it. Clint Eastwood directed "Letters.." and Flags of Our Fathers consecutively."Flags.." got a wider realease in the states, presumeably because it's told from the American viewpoint, I wouldn't be surprised if"Letters..." gets a more worldwide audience. It's told from the viewpoint of the Japanese and pretty much the last thing that the restof the world wants to see is another, "America is awesome" movie. I hope that wasn't too blunt. Anyway, both films are an achievement forEastwood, and he'll definitely be at the Kodak theater in March.
Best Actor:
Now this is interesting. It was a tie between Sacha Baron Cohen forBorat and Forest Whitaker for The Last King of Scotland. I reallydon't know if there's anything else I can say... nope, there's not.
Other mentionables: Again, the same titles as above were recognized The Queen, Pan's Labyrinth, and United 93 took home a couple, but there are some newbies. Volver, Pedro Amoldovar's latest film, which has been getting great word of mouth on Penelope Cruz's performance, got a few nods, as well as Dreamgirls, Children of Men (I've beenwriting about it, and it gets a limited release Christmas there!) , and one of my personal favorites Little Miss Sunshine(YES!!)
So now we can move on to the Awards yet to be had! We'll start withthe Golden Globes, which will air January 15, 2007, and the nominations just came out this week. The awards cover both TV and Film, but I'll just focus on the film part except to mention that A)The Office got two nominations (swanky!) and B) The Wire didn't getany (BOOOOO!!!) (see my next blog for more information).
Here we go:
Babel and Bobby get added as Best Picture (Drama) while The Devil Wears Prada and Thank You For Smoking are the new arrivals in the music/comedy section.
Maggie Gyllenhaal, Judi Dench, and Kate Winslet got nods for actressin a drama, while all of the comedic/musical performances are new nominations: Annette Bening, Toni Collette, Beyonce Knowles, MerylStreep and Renee Zellweger ( I really can't even talk about thiscategory).
For the men, Leonardo DiCaprio, who took two nominations in the same category, and Will Smith are the new guys on the block as well as the funnier/more musical guys: Johnny Depp, Aaron Eckheart, Will Ferrell and CHIWETEL EJIOFOR (you might know him from Dirty Pretty Things and if you don't shame on you).
*Trivia- Will Ferrell and Chiwetel Ejiofor were just in a movie together, Melinda, Melinda worth a rent, or better, watch it on HBO,if you can!*
Anyway, these are all just names and words, so let's get to the good stuff huh? Who's going to win, here's where I'm placing bets:
Best Picture (Drama)- Have to go with The Departed, while they came up with a surprisingly strong list this year, considering what we had in theaters, I think it's Scorsese's year...finally...fingers crossed.
Best Picture (Comedy/Musical)- Dreamgirls, they've been buzzing like a swarm about this movie since June, at least, and I think the ForeignPress is just drooling to get their hands on this envelope. Although Little Miss Sunshine should be right up there!
Best Director- Surprisingly, this is the only category that combines all of the nominees, so I'm going with Clint Eastwood, Letters From Iwo Jima...I don't know why, i know I just said that it was Scorcese'syear, but these awards get voted on around the world, and I just think Eastwood has a better chance, Scorsese should get the Oscar though, so don't worry.
Best Actor (Drama)/ (Comedy..) The Drama is the tougher category, but I'm going with Leonardo DiCaprio for Blood Diamond. I think the role shows more range for him as an actor than The Departed, plus, the plot has stirred up a whole movement in the U.S., so the social relevence is important. I was tempted to go with Forest Whitaker, but I think they'll want more of a name. Comedy will surprisingly enough, probably go to Sacha Baron Cohen, I mean he certainly knows how to stir up a hornet's nest, and I think the rest of the world probably appreciates his sardonic wit.
Best Actress (Drama)/ (Comedy...) Drama- I'm thinking Helen Mirren,I'd like to say Kate Winslet, because she's one of the few actresses that I think actually is amazing, and was amazing since Heavenly Creatures, but for some reason, she's not an award darling...Not likeMs. Meryl Streep, who could probably come onscreen and utter one foul word and get a nomination, but since I actually liked her in The Devil Wears Prada, a feat in and of itself, I think she gets the globe.
Best Supporting Actor - I have to say Jack Nicholson..A- because he's a legend and he's genuinely terrific, even if he actually is all ofthe characters he's ever played and B- they asked his daughter to be Miss Golden Globe 2007, you do the math
Best Supporting Actress-I'm going with Rinko Kikuchi, she's the deaf Japanese teen in Babel and the word on the street is she steals the show, plus every award show needs one of those "Holy Crap"moments...Although Jennifer Hudson is who I hope will win
Best Animated- Happy Feet, let's not joke, I mean Cars was fun andall, but aren't we a little tired of Pixar stealing everyone's thunder
Best Foreign Language- I'm going with Volver, time to give Amoldovar his due! Plus I think the Foreign Press just nominated Gibson and Eastwood to be equal oppotunists.
Best Screenplay: Guillermo Arriaga- Babel his film was satisfactorily complex. Although I think that Little Miss Sunshine definitely got the shaft here!
Best Original Score: For betting's sake, Gustavo Santaolalla forBabel...I don't really know much about this one, so I kind of forfeit.
Finally, Best Original Song: probably will go to Beyonce, for"Listen"- I'm sure Matthew Knowles is paying someone off as we speakto get his little girl a golden globe...Veruca Salt anyone?!

And now it's time to guess for The OSCARS!!! Oh god, just thinking that they're a mere three months away makes me happy that a new year is dawning! But really, here's how I think it's going to go down:
Best Picture: A. The Departed; B. Dreamgirls; C. Babel; D. LittleMiss Sunshine; E. The Queen ( Blood Diamond and Flags of our Fathersare riding the bench for now, they might slip in, but I think"Diamond' rests too much on Leo and so does the Departed and like I said, it's Scorsese's year and Flags of Our Fathers is second-rate to Letters From Iwo Jima)
Best Director: A. Martin Scorsese- The Departed; B. Alejandro Inarritu- Babel; C. Bill Condon- Dreamgirls; D. Robert De Niro- TheGood Shepherd(let's face it, he's beloved in Hollywood, like one of the Trinity ( I think he's the son, Scorsese is the Father, andEastwood is the Holy Spirit or something like that) anyway, he'll bepart of the trifecta since E. Clint Eastwood- Flags of Our Fatherswill get the last nod, even though Amoldovar deserved a spot, I think Inarritu is just fresher.
Best Actor- A. Leonardo DiCaprio- Blood Diamond; B. Forest Whitaker-The Last King of Scotland; C. Matt Damon- The Good Shepherd; D. RyanGosling- Half Nelson; Sacha Baron Cohen- Borat (Will Smith for thePursuit of Happyness is definitely a substitute and Clive Owen might shock for Children of Men, but this is my hopeful list).
Best Actress- A. Helen Mirren- The Queen; B. Penelope Cruz- Volver; C.Meryl Streep- The Devil Wears Prada; D. Kate Winslet- Little Children; E. Beyonce Knowles- Dreamgirls ( Judi Dench is the substitute here for Notes on a Scandal, but I don't think three veterans in a category is a good thing, and I think that since Jamie Foxx doesn't get the nod, Beyonce does)
Best Supporting Actress: A. Cate Blanchett- Notes on a Scandal, B.Jennifer Hudson- Dreamgirls; C. Rinko Kikuchi- Babel; D. AbigailBreslin- Little Miss Sunshine ( I mean I know it would make Dakota Fanning rage with jealousy, but without a little miss sunshine, what kind of movie do you have?!) E. Adriana Barraza- Babel (alternate might be Julianne Moore for Children of Men, I'm telling you don't count this out)
Best Supporting Actor- A. Eddie Murphy- Dreamgirls; B. Brad Pitt-Babel; C. Jack Nicholson- The Departed; D. Jackie Earle Haley-Little Children; E. Steve Carell- Little Miss Sunshine (Djimon Hounsou is my backup for Blood Diamond, but I think Little Children was highly underrated when it first came out and it's doing an Oscar push in theaters so look for it!)
Best Original Screenplay: Little Miss Sunshine; Babel; LittleChildren; The Queen ; The Good Shepherd (Alternate may be StrangerThan Fiction)
Best Adapted Screenplay: Dreamgirls; The Painted Veil; The Last Kingof Scotland; Notes on a Scandal; The Departed
Best Animated Film- goes to Happy Feet but Cars and Monster House andmaybe Over the Hedge get nominated too!

I'm thinking Flags of Our Fathers will pretty much be dissed, V forVendetta should have at least gotten some sort of nomination, Fast Food Nation gets left out (will Richard Linklater ever get a nod?) Apocalypto might shock everyone as Foreign Film winner, just to get Mel back on his feet again, For Your Consideration gets overlooked since Best in Show was really this group's time to shine, also Bobby gets overshadowed by heavier hitters this year. Emilio Estevez put up a pretty good movie, but it's the veteran's year to shine this year, I think it should be a good mix. So let me know what you think, laydown some bets and come January )Golden Globes) and February, for the Oscars, when the nominations get handed down I'll collect


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