Our fiery message boards are ablaze with some controversial Oscar topics and predictions, so Gold Derby Editors Daniel Montgomery, Rob Licuria, Charlie Bright, and I decided to strap on our gloves and enter the ring to battle over a few of these subjects in our second Oscar Hot Topics Slugfest (video below).
Julianne Moore’s recent comments on her belief – or lack thereof – in God and how it might affect her Oscar chances may be the most heated topic amongst derbyites in the forum right now, but could it be a non-issue? Bright thinks so: “Clint Eastwood has been very frank about his conservative viewpoints and he’s won four Oscars over his life, so [the academy is] by no means a very monolithic [group]: ‘If you don’t believe what we believe we will shun you.'”
Elsewhere, Eddie Redmayne’s recent SAG victory over presumed frontrunner Michael Keaton (“Birdman“) has made him the talk of the town. But his new film, “Jupiter Ascending,” opens this weekend and it does not look Oscar-friendly. In fact, there’s debate about whether this could do to him what “Norbit” is believed to have done to Eddie Murphy when he competed for “Dreamgirls” back in 2006: move him from Oscar frontrunner to Oscar loser. But Licuria thinks both theories are preposterous, saying, “I don’t think ‘Norbit’ hurt Eddie Murphy as much as we all like to think it did. That year there was just somebody who was able to take the trophy away from him and that’s really the end of it.”
The SAG victory for Redmayne could lead you to believe he is an Oscar shoo-in since the past 10 SAG Actor victors have gone on to snag Oscar, but Montgomery thinks this may actually bode well for another nominee: “I said before the SAG Awards, the best thing that could happen for Bradley Cooper would be a win at SAG for Eddie Redmayne, because he would need that race to split up between Keaton and Redmayne for him to have room to move through.”
Finally, “Birdman” shocked Hollywood by beating out presumed frontrunner “Boyhood” at PGA, and if it takes BAFTA’s top prize this weekend it may be seen as the odds-on favorite, but I think otherwise: “Even if ‘Birdman’ takes BAFTA, I’m not ready to jump on this ‘Birdman’ train quite yet. I think with the preferential ballot, [Oscar voters are] more inclined to put ‘Boyhood’ in the top three than something like ‘Birdman.'”
Watch our complete slugfest below as we hold nothing back on this week’s topics, and be sure to vent your own opinions in our message boards. Also, if you have a topic you’d like us to take on next then let us know in the comment section below or start a thread in our Oscar forum.