With its critical acclaim and box office success, “Gravity” has leapt to the forefront of this year’s Oscar derby in several categories. Among those is the race for Best Cinematography where Emmanuel Lubezki is looking to capture his first win after five losses.
He was first nominated in 1995 for “A Little Princess”, a film by Alfonso Cuarón who also directed “Gravity”; he lost to John Toll for “Braveheart,” that year’s Best Picture champ.
His second bid came in 1999 for his work on Tim Burton‘s “Sleepy Hollow”; he was bested by Conrad L. Hall for his work on that year’s Best Picture winner, “American Beauty.”
He was next nominated in 2005 for the Terrence Malick film, “The New World”; he was defeated by Dion Beebe for “Memoirs of a Geisha.”
The following year he reaped his fourth bid, along with many critics’ prizes, for his work on Cuarón’s film, “Children of Men”; he lost the Oscar to “Pan’s Labyrinth” lenser, Guillermo Navarro.
He scored his most recent nomination in 2011 for Malick’s “The Tree of Life.” Though his work again brought him many awards from the critics, he lost the Oscar to Robert Richardson for “Hugo.”
Lubezki has several factors working in his favor this year. “Gravity” is shot in 3D as were the last four Cinematography champs — “Avatar,” “Inception,” “Hugo,” and “Life of Pi.” And, like all of them, “Gravity” did well with audiences and critics alike.
Currently, Lubezki leads the race with 3/2 odds of victory. That is far ahead of the lensers for “12 Years A Slave” (10/3), “Rush” (8/1) and both “Inside Llewyn Davis” and “Captain Phillips” at 14/1.
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