Prolific composer Alexandre Desplat could also be in contention for "Argo," "Zero Dark Thirty," "Rust and Bone," "Moonrise Kingdom" and "Rise of the Guardians." But last year he did not land a nomination for any of his nine films, including "The Ides of March," "The Tree of Life," "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close," and the final "Harry Potter." But does the "Argo" score work for the movie? Yes. It's a careful enhancement of what is on screen without being overly manipulative. "We didn't want to point to things," says Goldenberg. "Or Hollywoodize it."

Exactly. Affleck reminds Hollywood of what the studios should be aiming for as a matter of course. Luring moviegoers back to theaters with quality movies should not be the exception that proves the rule.

Kim Masters interviews Affleck on KCRW here. LAT feature here.