July 2, 2012 at 9:49 am #64143
So since the winners are often clear even before nominations are announced, I was wondering when was the last time there was an actual open race in an Oscar category? No 2-horse races with a possible spoiler, an open race where at least 4 nominees could have pulled the win.July 2, 2012 at 10:16 am #64145
I think the last time was the 2007 race for best supporting actress. Cate won the globe, Dee won the SAG,Tilda won the BAFTA and Amy Ryan won the Critics Choice, four horse race right thereJuly 2, 2012 at 11:05 am #64146
It sounds like you are limiting this only to the four acting contests, not the usually more interesting and (for me) equally or more important other ones.July 2, 2012 at 11:38 am #64147
It doesn’t sound like that to me. Does “an Oscar category” imply acting category? I don’t think so.July 2, 2012 at 12:35 pm #64148
the 2007 race for best supporting actress is the first that popping to me lolJuly 2, 2012 at 3:37 pm #64149
The 2007 Supporting Actress race is definitely the most recent example.
I think the 1992 Supporting Actress race was very competitive which is why Marisa Tomei probably managed to slip through (though I don’t hate her win by any means). Judy Davis was beloved by the critics, as was Miranda Richardson, who won a Globe for Enchanted April along with being that year’s indie smash The Crying Game, and then you had the two veterans, Joan Plowright, who won the Globe, and Vanessa Redgrave, who seemed to have a lot of passionate support from some critics (didn’t Rex Reed think that she was the one who actually won?).
I remember there being a lot of speculation over what would win Best Picture in 2006: Babel won the Globe, LMS won the PGA, The Departed won the DGA and then Letters From Iwa Jima won several major critics. Only The Queen didn’t really have a shot (which it deserved to). I honestly think that Babel didn’t have a huge shot though, however my massive distaste for it my cloud my judgement.
Much hoopla was made over the 1991 Best Picture race even though all signs pointed to The Silence of the Lambs winning. Beauty and the Beast, Bugsy, and JFK all seemed to have things going for them. So did Prince of Tides until the Director snub.
The 1990 Best Actress race seemed to have a lot of division as well. Kathy Bates won the Globe but there seemed to be a lot of support for Anjelica Huston and Joanne Woodward. You could say Julia Roberts had a chance due to Globe win and huge popularity but I honestly don’t think that would be the case. Meryl Streep was definitely not in the running.July 2, 2012 at 3:59 pm #64150
Best Editing from this past year was very wide open. The nominees included The Descendants, Hugo, The Artist, and Moneyball. The winner turned out to be the only film in the field without a Best Picture nomination: The Girl with the Dagon Tattoo.
Best Original Screenplay was also pretty interesting, with most people making a case for Midnight in Paris, A Separation, or The Artist as the eventual winner.July 2, 2012 at 4:06 pm #64151
Best Supporting Actress in 2000. Hudson won the Globe, Dench won the SAG, Walters won the Bafta, and McDormand won a thousand critic awards. Besides one critic award, idk what Harden had on her side before her much deserved win. She was probably conceived as filler I can imagine.July 2, 2012 at 4:22 pm #64152
Best Supporting Actress in 2000. Hudson won the Globe, Dench won the SAG, Walters won the Bafta, and McDormad won a thousand critic awards. Besides one critic award, idk what Harden had on her side before her much deserved win. She was probably conceived as filler I can imagine.
Harden had absolutely NOTHING lol
the same thing occured in the best supporting actor in 98. Ed Harris won the Globe and NBR, Geoffrey Rush won the BAFTA and he was in 2 best picture nominees, Bob Thornton won the BFCA and LA, and Duvall won the SAG. Coburn who didn’t won anything… took the Oscar lolJuly 2, 2012 at 11:24 pm #64153
All four acting races in 2002 were at least somewhat competitive:
Actor: Nicholson and Daniel Day-Lewis tied at the BFCA, Nicholson took the Globe, DDL the SAG and BAFTA, but Brody came out of nowhere and won.
Actress: Julianne Moore won most of the critics, Kidman won the Drama Globe and the BAFTA, Zellweger the SAG and Comedy/Musical Globe.
Supporting Actor: Chris Cooper won most everything up until the SAG and BAFTA suddenly went to Christopher Walken.
Supporting Actress: Streep won the Globe, though that was probably because the Globes nominated Zeta-Jones in Lead.July 3, 2012 at 9:29 pm #64154
For the 2007 Supporting Actress race, if I could, I would have campaigned Helena Bonham Carter /Sweeney Todd in Supporting, even though she’s definitely lead, and would give her the win. And then probably give Tilda Swinton a deserving Lead win the following year for Julia.July 3, 2012 at 11:29 pm #64155
It sounds like you are limiting this only to the four acting contests, not the usually more interesting and (for me) equally or more important other ones.
What would your list of the tech ones look like?July 7, 2012 at 12:54 am #64156
I assume you are referring to major categories, and excluding technical categories. To me it seems that in any given year, any of the nominees in the short film categories all have an equal shot of winning.
As for some recent races in the major categories though, here are some that come to mind:
2000 Best Actor – That year the winners for lead actor at BAFTA (Jamie Bell, Billy Elliot) and SAG (Benicio Del Toro, Traffic, who was nominated & won in supporting at the Oscars) weren’t in contention, so it was Javier Bardem who had won the NBR, Tom Hanks who won the Golden Globe and Geoffrey Rush and Russell Crowe who each won a handful of critics’ awards (and Ed Harris was also nominated, but he didn’t really have many precursor awards).
1998 Best Actor – Golden Globe winner Jim Carrey didn’t get nominated, leaving Roberto Benigni (BAFTA, SAG), Ian McKellen (BFCA), Nick Nolte (various critics’ awards), Tom Hanks, and Edward Norton. I suppose Benigni looks like the obvious frontrunner now as the SAG winner, but does anyone remember who was expected to win that night, or was it pretty open?July 7, 2012 at 1:02 am #64157
I will also second the 2006 Best Picture race. It was one of the few instances in recent memory where I wasn’t quite sure which film would win. Remember, this was the year everyone was predicting Dreamgirls to win, and it wasn’t even nominated, leaving The Departed (DGA and BFCA winner), Little Miss Sunshine (PGA and SAG winner, but no Oscar nomination for directing), Babel (the Golden Globe winner), The Queen (BAFTA winner, and Rotten Tomatoes’ highest-rated film that year), and Letters from Iwo Jima (NBR and AFI winner), although the last two films I didn’t think had a very good chance of winning.July 7, 2012 at 3:01 am #64158
For me, even Hurt Locker vs. Avatar was a nail-biter till the end. I guess the former won most of the critics + BAFTA, but down to the final days, it seemed like Avatar was too big to ignore and they’d spilt Director and Picture. But Kathryn Bigelow winning was pretty much certain.