Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Relativity Faces Bankruptcy, Spelling More Disaster for 'Jane Got a Gun' Relativity Faces Bankruptcy, Spelling More Disaster for 'Jane Got a Gun' 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Richard Linklater's Untitled New Film Pushed to 2016, Might Direct Jennifer Lawrence Movie Richard Linklater's Untitled New Film Pushed to 2016, Might Direct Jennifer Lawrence Movie Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers 'Steve Jobs' Joins Fall Festival Contenders as NYFF Centerpiece Gala: What's Coming Up and What's Not (UPDATED) 'Steve Jobs' Joins Fall Festival Contenders as NYFF Centerpiece Gala: What's Coming Up and What's Not (UPDATED) Arthouse Audit: Is 'Phoenix' This Year's 'Ida'? 'Mr. Holmes' Stays Strong Arthouse Audit: Is 'Phoenix' This Year's 'Ida'? 'Mr. Holmes' Stays Strong Friday Box Office: Sandler's 'Pixels' Gets Mixed Response, 'Paper Towns,' 'Southpaw' Not Far Behind Friday Box Office: Sandler's 'Pixels' Gets Mixed Response, 'Paper Towns,' 'Southpaw' Not Far Behind Scott Foundas Explains Why He's Leaving Film Criticism--Again--for Amazon Studios Scott Foundas Explains Why He's Leaving Film Criticism--Again--for Amazon Studios Congrats to Monica Bellucci: She's Making History Congrats to Monica Bellucci: She's Making History Broad Green Dates 'Knight of Cups' and Two More Releases Broad Green Dates 'Knight of Cups' and Two More Releases Watch: The Secret Ingredient to David Lynch's Disorienting Cinema Watch: The Secret Ingredient to David Lynch's Disorienting Cinema First Look: 'No' Director Pablo Larraín Channels 'Neruda' with Gael García Bernal First Look: 'No' Director Pablo Larraín Channels 'Neruda' with Gael García Bernal Is 'The Revenant' the Most Hellish Shoot of All Time? Is 'The Revenant' the Most Hellish Shoot of All Time? Gabriel García Márquez Documentary Coming Soon (Trailer) Gabriel García Márquez Documentary Coming Soon (Trailer) Why I Can't Wait to See 'Crimson Peak,' Guillermo del Toro's Sumptuous Period Thriller (VIDEO) Why I Can't Wait to See 'Crimson Peak,' Guillermo del Toro's Sumptuous Period Thriller (VIDEO) Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A) Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A) Gabriel García Márquez and Akira Kurosawa Talk Film, Writing and 'Rhapsody in August' in 1991 Gabriel García Márquez and Akira Kurosawa Talk Film, Writing and 'Rhapsody in August' in 1991

Oscar Talk: What Can Topple The Artist? New Ballots Change Race; Top Five Actresses; Lagging Christmas Contenders

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood December 31, 2011 at 12:04PM

In this week's Oscar Talk, after a holiday hiatus Kris Tapley and I come back to assess the Oscar race just as Academy voters get their ballots in the mail. This time, there will be five slots for an undetermined number of Best Picture candidates.
19

Oscar Talk Logo
In this week's Oscar Talk, after a holiday hiatus Kris Tapley and I come back to assess the Oscar race just as Academy voters get their ballots in the mail.

This time, there will be five slots for an undetermined number of Best Picture candidates. Any movie that gets too many third, fourth and fifth place votes won't register in the final outcome. This could leave popular titles without passionate fans--such as "Moneyball" or "Midnight in Paris"-- in the lurch.

I agree that it's better for Oscar voters to select five movies that they love than to stretch to include a bunch of movies they just like. But if the idea behind the change was to boost more popular titles into the Oscar Show, the Academy could still wind up with a less mainstream list. My wicked fantasy: so many people in the Academy put "Melanchoilia" and "Shame" in the number one spot that they wind up in the Top Five.

Thus, even though Kris and I agree on the top eight films, we could be totally wrong. My guess at the top five: "The Artist," "The Descendants," "Hugo," "War Horse" and "The Help," followed by "Moneyball," "Midnight in Paris" and "The Tree of Life."

We assess the Best Actress race and agree that the SAG five will probably prevail, as "Young Adult" has joined the lengthening list of weak Oscar contenders that includes late-year Christmas entries "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close" and "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo." Meanwhile Steven Spielberg's "War Horse" could gain momentum going forward, with strong box office. 

And we both agree that the Academy played it too dull and safe with the ugly new Oscar poster.

This article is related to: Awards, Awards, Oscars


E-Mail Updates








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.