While history is being made across Oscar categories this year — including landmark advances for people of color and a potential record-breaking sweep for “La La Land” — it can be easy to overlook some under-the-radar accomplishments that are nevertheless significant.
Consider Michelle Williams. The former “Dawson’s Creek” star first made a bid for industry prestige with her supporting role in “Brokeback Mountain.” She earned an Oscar nomination for that performance and has since been nominated three more times: Best Actress for “Blue Valentine” (2010) and “My Week with Marilyn” (2011), and Best Supporting Actress again this year for “Manchester by the Sea.” That’s four nominations, and she’s still only 36 years old, so she’s approaching Kate Winslet and Amy Adams territory for impressive career achievement at a relatively young age. And given her penchant for unique prestige projects, it seems likely that she will continue to add to her nominations haul regardless of this year’s result.
But what’s her best nominated performance thus far? In “Brokeback Mountain” she played the neglected wife of Best Actor nominee Heath Ledger as a closeted gay cowboy. She expressed heartbreak again in “Blue Valentine,” which chronicles the end of her marriage to Ryan Gosling. In “My Week with Marilyn” she explored the troubled private and professional lives of Marilyn Monroe. And in “Manchester” she co-stars as a woman grieving the end of her marriage and much more.
ThePerksOfBeingAGriff: “I have always thought that Michelle Williams had the potential to be like Audrey Hepburn. She really just needs her ‘Breakfast At Tiffany’s.’ She is so incredible with everything she does and she just needs to do something big that can carry her above the competition.”
BenitoDelicias: “‘Blue Valentine’ certainly is her best performance, but I can’t take that Oscar away from [Natalie Portman, who won for ‘Black Swan’]. And what a great category that was.”
Malcoln Dunbar: “I think ‘My Week With Marilyn’ was the best shot at a win; it was effortless, subtle, quiet and graceful, in a way that can’t be underestimated. ‘Brokeback Mountain’ is her runner up.”
Jason Travis: “‘Blue Valentine’ (2010): Effortless, snooty, fragile, and absorbing. Her most powerful work to date, though Ryan Gosling should also have been recognized.”
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