April 21, 2015 at 9:24 pm #185630
You can wish for one person to win an Oscar before their career is over. It doesn’t matter what upcoming films they might have on the way or even what their job is (actor, director, writer, etc.).
Who would it be and why? Please only offer one name with a reason or analysis. It can’t be someone who has won an Oscar before (but could be somebody with an honorary award).
I will include the best responses in an upcoming blog item.April 21, 2015 at 9:54 pm #185632
I’d use my magic wish for my favorite actor, Harrison Ford. He has delivered two of the most iconic characters in the medium in Indiana Jones and Han Solo. He’s an awesome action star and his legacy reaches outside those franchises with hits such as Air Force One and The Fugitive.
Is there another actor who you never see with the title ‘Academy Award nominee’? Nobody seems to remember he was nominated for Witness. I thought he delivered a knockout supporting turn in 2013’s 42. He didn’t play himself (though I hate that criticism) this time. It was Ford’s first chance to play a real person and he sure didn’t disappoint. He nailed all of Branch Rickey’s mannerisms and looked the part too. Unfortunately the movie was released in April, too early for voters to remember him. The release was timed to allign with Jackie Robinson Day. He only ended up with a couple critics nominations. Oh well. He did give the good old campaign try.
Here’s hoping he receives the Kennedy Center Honors in December.April 21, 2015 at 9:57 pm #185633
Hmmm… I’d have to give this one to Michelle Williams. I just think she is entierly underrated. In fact, I consider her to be among the best actresses working today.April 21, 2015 at 10:51 pm #185634
My choice would be Ken Watanabe. I always thought he was talented, but over the last few years he has become one of my favourites. Whether its Last Samurai, Letters from Iwo Jima or Yurusarezaru Mono (among others), Ken constantly turns in great work. He’s like a breath of fresh air, considering his style of acting is not readily seen in North America. In addition, he brings such raw emotion to his performances, creating a lasting effect on the viewer. He’s one of those rare actors who can convey so much by doing so little, and that is a skill unto itself. Lastly, Ken represents a group that is RARELY recognized in the North American film industry, and with a win the door could be opened for more fantastic actors of Asian decent to be recognized. And that could never be a bad thing!April 21, 2015 at 11:23 pm #185635
Yesh there are so many. Would it be one of my favorite actors Ralph Fiennes, Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, or
Or someone that has had a win worthy performance but never won like Bette Midler, Annette Bening, or Leonardo DiCaprio?
Or would it be one of my favorite directors Tim Burton, David Lynch, or Baz Luhrmann?
I’m guessing dead doesn’t count like Sidney Lumet, Stanley Kubrick, Anthony Perkins, or Alfred Hitchcock
Picking one is hard but ultimately it would have to be Tim Burton. His library is full of wonders and he is one of the very first directors I knew by name. His work has such style to it and he’s so unique. No, not all of his films are perfect but his imagination is in the right place most of the time. I really thought he deserved at least a nomination for Sweeney Tood and he really made waves in the field that he could only get nominated in, animation. The Nightmare Before Christmas is a masterpiece. Corpse Bride is a wonderful film too. I know the Academy will never honor him competitively unless he strikes gold with another animated movie but he really deserves one,April 21, 2015 at 11:23 pm #185636
Here’s a Master Cinematographer who could have several Statues already on his mantel, instead of Zero. He elevates every single film he’s ever worked in, and he’s been doing this for decades.
Go Roger!April 21, 2015 at 11:52 pm #185637
A win for a deserving production from my nation in Best Foreign Language Film.
The mexican filmmaking is non-stop progressing in recent years and if you have had the chance to watch our cinema, the real finest cinema, then you know what I am talking about. There are great visions and voices, filmmakers reconfiguring a new era from what for decades was stuck. The potential is there. Beyond the big names of Cuarón and Iñárritu and Del Toro.
I think it’s a matter of time to happen. But to be honest half of this depends on the Academia Mexicana de Artes y Ciencias Cinematográficas. They need to suck up their internal and peripheral politics bullshit and just chose the best and right submission.April 22, 2015 at 12:08 am #185638
I know this does not fall under “production”, but if it were up to me, Emilio Echevarría and Gael García Bernal would already own oscars.April 22, 2015 at 12:41 am #185639
DISCLAIMER: What was originally meant as a small post ended up growing into a small essay. Oof. Sorry about the odd picture formatting.
There are a number of great actors that I could pick for this, but my selection goes for a different angle. My choice to win an Oscar is Roger Deakins, who may just be the finest cinematographer working today. He is a man whose selection of lighting can always be trusted to elevate a film’s atmosphere.
Obviously, he’s most famous for his prolific relationship with the Coen
Brothers, having shot many of their best features. This is no coincidence.
Deakins’ influence looms large in the worlds of the duo, perfectly capturing
the hazy coldness of snowy Minnesota in Fargo, the shadowy menace plaguing No
Country for Old Men, the brilliant black-and-white melancholy of The Man Who
Wasn’t There (transferred from color), and the looming sunlight that helps to
frame True Grit’s western terrain.
That said, Deakins has still managed to accomplish some of his best work when
working away from the duo. Indeed, in discussions of the James Bond movie
Skyfall, one of the most noteworthy aspects that received positive notice was
Deakins’ cinematography. His mixture of color palettes gave the film a visual
aesthetic well beyond what was typically expected for the franchise, serving to
amplify the film’s level of suspense. This is best displayed in the fight that
Bond has near the top of the Shanghai skyscraper, where its combatants are
shrouded in darkness and reflections, illuminated only by the light from
Likewise, when examining The Shawshank Redemption – a film now regarded as one
of the most popular of all time, according to IMDB – Deakins’ contributions
cannot be underestimated. The texture of Shawshank is one of the keys to its
success as an enduring piece of work. There is a focus of blue and grey
throughout the film, coloring both the prisoner uniforms and the stony interior
of the prison itself. These take up a lot of the viewer’s eye, and provide a subdued
look that complements the dourness of the initial scenes.
However, this is actually a useful
misdirect, as it makes the eventual puncturing of hope throughout the film all
the more welcome. In one of the film’s most euphoric scenes, Andy Dufresne and
his friends have finished tarring the prison roof in exchange for some cold
beer. It’s a brief respite from all of the troubles that have plagued them, and
their happiness is encapsulated in the way that the camera slowly transitions
to show each of them drinking merrily, the dawning sunlight basking the group
in its glow. The subtle shifts provide the film with a fable-like quality.
Finally, there’s his work with Andrew
Dominik’s The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. As bold
as it may sound, this is the crowning achievement of Deakins’ career. It gets
my vote for the most beautiful film of the 21st Century (so far, at
least). The lushness that Deakins captures in Jesse James is so vivid that it
often gives me the feeling of a painting come alive. I expect the screen to
start dripping, as each scene looks as though it’s been freshly set to dry.
The power he displays here comes across
almost from the outset, when the James gang robs an evening train. The film
portrays the vehicle as protruding from the dark reach of night, making for an
unsettling sight. To compound this, the train actually collides with the camera,
briefly appearing to break the fourth wall and disarm the viewer.
His input reaches its peak shortly
after the titular assassination has taken place, and we see his body put on
display for the public. Rather than just gaze at James from a straight angle,
the camera pans and we observe it from the reflection of a camera lens. It’s a
cold shot, and one that details how James belongs to the ages from that point
forward. It is the kind of thing that leaves me stunned every time that I think
Now, for the awards. Deakins is obviously regarded with esteem by his
colleagues, having earned 12 Academy Award nominations over the last 25 years.
Sadly, and despite having won 3 times with the American Society of
Cinematographers (ASC), he still remains Oscarless. Of all Oscar snubs, this is
among the most egregious. Deakins has proven worthy of honor time and again. If
you were to ask me, his time would’ve come already for The Shawshank
Redemption, The Assassination of Jesse James, and Skyfall (with Fargo, The Man
Who Wasn’t There, True Grit, and Prisoners also being worthy selections). If
there is anyone worthy of an Oscar, it is him, and I hope the Academy rectifies
their ill judgment at some point in the future, and soon.April 22, 2015 at 1:44 am #185640
She’s had so many nominations and I think in the case of three of her 6 loses you could argue she gave the best performance in the category or at least a better one than the actual winner. (The World According to Garp, Fatal Attraction, Dangerous Liasons).
I recently rewatched The Natural which was always considered a weird nomination for her, one that she herself was suprised to receive. I found her surprisingly moving and strong in the film. (and not just during the famous standing in the bleechers scene.) She really was the bright spot of a film that is considered a little uneven at times.April 22, 2015 at 2:08 am #185641
1st Leonardo DiCaprio
2nd Jamie Lee Curtis
3rd Jake Gyllenhaal
Honorable Mentions: Keira Knightley; Amy Adams; Cicely Tyson; Melissa McCarthy; Saoirse Ronan; Ryan Gosling; Joaquin Phoenix; Annette Bening; Jessica Chastain; Emma Watson; Frances Conroy; Angela Bassett; Gabourey Sidibe; Ralph Fiennes; Sandra Oh; Sarah Paulson; Edward Norton; Sigourney Weaver; Laura Dern; Laura Linney; Michelle Williams; Vera Farmiga; Anna Kendrick; Queen Latifah.April 22, 2015 at 3:06 am #185642
I won’t list the obvious ones – we all know Leo, Joaquin, Jake and Adams will eventually win – I want to concentrate on someone who I am scared will never have the opportunity to ever win again.
I would like to wish for one actor to win another Oscar before his career is over – Jack Nicholson. Let’s not deny it, Jack Nicholson is the greatest living actor. Let’s just pump the brakes on Leonardo DiCaprio, Jake Gyllenhaal and Joaquin Phoenix having that description, because they are still young, and will no doubt be that in a few decades, but while he’s still around, the title belongs to Jack. I know he hasn’t made a film since 2010 – but he’s not officially retired yet. It is a shame, because at least his last films weren’t dismal (Robert De Niro mainly makes crap these days, and all of Al Pacino’s good work is on TV). Jack acted less frequently in the 2000s, but still made at least interesting projects. My dream is for him to win again, maybe with a meaty supporting role.
Yes, four Oscars does seem excessive, you can definitely argue that. But you know where you argument falls to the ground? The moment when you realize that is is JACK NICHLSON we are talking about…April 22, 2015 at 3:18 am #185643
I would love to see David Fincher win an Oscar at some point in his career. He has such a bold stamp over all of his films, something which some Oscar winners just don’t have *cough*TOM HOOPER*cough*.
He has made some absolute belters, some of which have been Academy fare – The Social Network & The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, as well as ones which were completely made just for the audience, without awards being in mind: Fight Club, Zodiac & Se7en.
With the exception of Alien 3, he hasn’t really put a foot wrong with the films he has directed, all of them since have been critically acclaimed, and loved by audiences.April 22, 2015 at 4:23 am #185644
albert finney and doris day must get special oscars.
ralph fiennes and annette bening must win competitive ones.April 22, 2015 at 4:28 am #185645
Tough to pick one, but I’ll go with Michael Fassbender. He is my favorite living actor working today who always delivers performances that are a complete 180 from the other (a slave owner, a sex addict, a musician that wears a paper mache head, Magneto, an android, a starving prisoner, and pretty soon Steve Jobs and Macbeth) and I think he should be given his due. Plus, since he is not a very aggressive campaigner, a win for him would possibly allow the performance to speak for itself. Personally, I think it always should be that way.
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