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American Society of Cinematographers Shuts Out Spielberg's 'War Horse'

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood January 11, 2012 at 12:10PM

Hollywood's Guild nominees are more indicative of where the Oscar race is heading then the various critics' groups, which serve to put a spotlight on what Academy voters should see, and help start momentum behind certain contenders. But the Guilds actually overlap with Academy voters. Here are the five nominees:
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Jessica Chastain & Brad Pitt in "The Tree of Life"
Jessica Chastain & Brad Pitt in "The Tree of Life"

Hollywood's Guild nominees are more indicative of where the Oscar race is heading then the various critics' groups, which serve to put a spotlight on what Academy voters should see, and help start momentum behind certain contenders. But the Guilds actually overlap with Academy voters. Here are the five nominees:

Guillaume Schiffman, AFC ("The Artist")
Jeff Cronenweth, ASC ("The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo")
Robert Richardson, ASC (Hugo)
Hoyte van Hoytema, FSF, NSC (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy)
Emmanuel Lubezki, ASC, AMC (The Tree of Life)

Thus Steven Spielberg's period "War Horse" is looking like a weak candidate indeed, as Janusz Kaminski did not land a nomination from the American Society of Cinematographers. Also notable is the inclusion instead of 2011 nominee Jeff Cronenweth ("The Social Network") for another David Fincher film, "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo," which is taking guild slots (ADG, WGA, DGA) that might have been expected to go to "War Horse." And as I predicted, while "The Tree of Life" has been making a poor showing so far with the Guilds (as opposed to critics groups), Emmanuel Lubezki does turn up here. Also showing continued strength is meticulously made period film "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy."

While "The Descendants" was the only contender with a perfect record so far with the guilds (nommed by SAG, PGA, DGA, WGA and ADG), it was not to be expected that the low-budget relationship drama would score many technical awards. Steady as they go are "The Artist" and "Hugo." This group should also be the Oscar five. While Lubeszki (who won the ASC in 2007 for "Children of Men") could win the Oscar, note that respected Robert Richardson scored his 10th ASC nomination. The ASC winner often matches up with the Oscar-winner, as Wally Pfister did last year ("Inception"). 


 

This article is related to: Awards, Oscars, Awards, Steven Spielberg, David Fincher


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.