Oscar & Emmy Watch: Musings & Misgivings: Predicting the Oscar Nominations
In the wake of all the furious yapping and debate over Ricky Gervais’s performance last Sunday as Golden Globe Awards host—was he hilariously on the edge or hopelessly off the wall?—you’ll understand if few in Hollywood, a week later, still care a lick about that particular tempest.
Or, for that matter, if they even remember who the night’s winners were. For Tinseltown’s movers and shakers, there are greater anxieties on the immediate horizon. Studio executives and stars, along with their agents, publicists, accountants and herbal therapists, can now officially break out the bottles of Maalox and steady their nerves awaiting the announcement of 2010 Oscar nominations on Tuesday morning, Jan. 25.
For the nominees, of course, it’s a big career boost followed by all the attendant press hoopla and interviews in which most utter—unconvincingly, to be sure--the even bigger lie: “It’s an honor enough just to be nominated.” Well, yes, it is an honor of sorts—just not enough of one to make up for not actually winning the big prize. And for those depressed souls shut out of a nomination, it’s a case of wait until next year—maybe. Award-worthy parts don’t come along often, and as has been noted in this column before, even all-time greats such as Edward G. Robinson and Fred MacMurray went an entire career without a single acting nomination. So if, for example, the oddly underrated Mark Ruffalo, who’s never really given a bad performance in a solid career, misses out on his first nomination for The Kids Are All Right, who knows when, if ever, his next opportunity will come.
That being said, and having brewed the requisite tea leaves, here is how I see the six major categories shaping up:
1. Colin Firth,The King’s Speech
2. James Franco,127 Hours
3. Mark Wahlberg, The Fighter
4. Jeff Bridges, True Grit
5. Ryan Gosling, Blue Valentine
*But watch out for: Robert Duvall, an Academy favorite, for Get Low. And is it really possible that Jesse Eisenberg will NOT be nominated for The Social Network? Being part of an ensemble film sometimes costs. There’s invariably one out-of-nowhere Indie that grabs major nominations—I’m thinking this year it’s Blue Valentine and that it propels Gosling. It does appear, however, that everyone but Firth is playing for second place. If there’s a sure thing come Oscar night (Feb. 27), it’s him.Continued on the next page