Cary Fukunaga does it all on “Beasts of No Nation,” an intense drama about child soldiers in Africa. He produced, directed, adapted Uzodinma Iweala’s acclaimed 2005 novel of the same name, and even handled lensing. As such, he has the potential to become only the third person to ever be nominated for four Oscars in the same year for the same film. If pulls off this four play, he’d join two Hollywood icons in the Oscar record book: Orson Welles and Warren Beatty.
Welles became the first person to garner four nominations for one film in 1941 with “Citizen Kane. He contended for Best Picture, Directing, Actor and Original Screenplay (with Herman J. Mankiewicz), winning the latter honor. He lost Picture and Directing to “How Green Was My Valley” and its helmer John Ford, and the Actor prize to Gary Cooper for “Sergeant York.”
Beatty managed to achieve this feat twice. He did it first in 1978 with “Heaven Can Wait” with nominations for Picture, Directing (with Buck Henry), Actor and Adapted Screenplay (with Elaine May). He lost all four of those races: Picture and Directing to “The Deer Hunter” and its helmer Michael Cimino, Actor to Jon Voight for “Coming Home” and Adapted Screenplay to Oliver Stone for “Midnight Express.”
Three years later, Beatty was back with four nominations for “Reds” in 1981: Picture, Directing, Actor and Original Screenplay (with Trevor Griffiths). This time he pulled off a victory in the Directing category but still lost Picture and Original Screenplay to “Chariots of Fire” and Actor to Henry Fonda for “On Golden Pond.”
Fukunaga, who won the Emmy for Best Drama Directing last year for “True Detective,” could score bids for Best Picture (as a producer), Best Directing, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Cinematography.
Our odds here at Gold Derby show that Fukunaga has some ground to gain on the competition but is definitely in the running to be recognized. The film is currently in 14th place in the race for Best Picture with 66/1 odds of winning. For the Directing prize, Fukunaga is in 11th place with odds of 50/1 and he is in eighth place with the same odds in the Adapted Screenplay category. (See all Oscar odds and rankings here.)
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Photo Credit: Netflix