Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
5 Things You Didn't Know About Lars von Trier, Who's Going Back to Work 5 Things You Didn't Know About Lars von Trier, Who's Going Back to Work Digging Into the Cannes Lineup: More Vet Auteurs and Women, No Netflix Digging Into the Cannes Lineup: More Vet Auteurs and Women, No Netflix Ryan Gosling in Talks for 'Blade Runner' Sequel, Damien Chazelle's 'La La Land' Ryan Gosling in Talks for 'Blade Runner' Sequel, Damien Chazelle's 'La La Land' You Can Now Read Over 200,000 Leaked Sony Emails and Documents You Can Now Read Over 200,000 Leaked Sony Emails and Documents Watch: The New 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Trailer Has Landed Watch: The New 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Trailer Has Landed Watch: This Exclusive Tribeca Trailer Promises a Vérité Southern Gothic in Malick Vein Watch: This Exclusive Tribeca Trailer Promises a Vérité Southern Gothic in Malick Vein 7 Things to Learn from 'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner About Compelling Storytelling (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO) 7 Things to Learn from 'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner About Compelling Storytelling (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO) 'Queen of Earth,' Starring a Gloriously Unhinged Elisabeth Moss, Goes to IFC 'Queen of Earth,' Starring a Gloriously Unhinged Elisabeth Moss, Goes to IFC Cary Fukunaga Takes Over Long-Stalled 'The Alienist' as TV Series Cary Fukunaga Takes Over Long-Stalled 'The Alienist' as TV Series Why the Istanbul Film Festival Cancelled Its 2015 Competition Why the Istanbul Film Festival Cancelled Its 2015 Competition MTV Movie Awards 2015: The Highs, the Lows and the Winners List (Videos) MTV Movie Awards 2015: The Highs, the Lows and the Winners List (Videos) Arthouse Audit: 'Ex Machina' Leads Four Big Openers, Kristen Stewart Opens 'Clouds of Sils Maria' Arthouse Audit: 'Ex Machina' Leads Four Big Openers, Kristen Stewart Opens 'Clouds of Sils Maria' From 'Boyhood' to 'Boy Next Door,' the 2015 MTV Movie Awards Noms Are All Over the Map From 'Boyhood' to 'Boy Next Door,' the 2015 MTV Movie Awards Noms Are All Over the Map 25 Years Ago I Wrote: "Hollywood's Female Stars An Endangered Species" 25 Years Ago I Wrote: "Hollywood's Female Stars An Endangered Species" The New Ladder: Anatomy of Indie Women's Picture 'Farah Goes Bang' The New Ladder: Anatomy of Indie Women's Picture 'Farah Goes Bang' Here's the First Image of Emma Stone and Joaquin Phoenix in Woody Allen's 'Irrational Man' Here's the First Image of Emma Stone and Joaquin Phoenix in Woody Allen's 'Irrational Man' Reese Witherspoon Nabs 'Luckiest Girl Alive' with Lionsgate, with "a wily, intelligent, complex narrator" Reese Witherspoon Nabs 'Luckiest Girl Alive' with Lionsgate, with "a wily, intelligent, complex narrator" Kristen Stewart Explains How She Held Her Own with Juliette Binoche in 'Sils Maria'--and Won a Cesar Kristen Stewart Explains How She Held Her Own with Juliette Binoche in 'Sils Maria'--and Won a Cesar Scientists Choose the 10 Best Sci-Fi Movies Ever Scientists Choose the 10 Best Sci-Fi Movies Ever Ryan Gosling Reveals How and Why He Shot 'Lost River' Ryan Gosling Reveals How and Why He Shot 'Lost River'

Should There Be a Best Casting Oscar?

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood August 19, 2013 at 3:31PM

Just because the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has added a new, 17th branch for Casting Directors doesn't mean there will be a Best Casting Oscar anytime soon.
2
Marion Dougherty
Marion Dougherty

Just because the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has added a new, 17th branch for Casting Directors doesn't mean there will be a Best Casting Oscar anytime soon.

But that didn't stop Oscar pundit Nathaniel Rogers of The Film Experience from asking the question on Twitter, which yielded a lively debate. A Best Casting Oscar is unlikely to happen because it raises too many thorny issues. For one, the Academy hates imitating other awards shows like the Screen Actors Guild Awards, which give their "Best Picture" for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture. The Independent Spirits give their Robert Altman Award to the director, producer and casting director. 

Casting Oscar tweet

With movies, the director has final say on casting, with a lot of input from producers and whoever is paying for the movie, be it foreign sales companies or studios, even if a gifted casting director like Marion Dougherty, the subject of recent HBO documentary "Casting By" (review here), or Juliet Taylor, who has introduced many up-and-coming actors to directors like Woody Allen, have a huge impact on who winds up in a film--or has a career. 

I disagree with Mark Harris and In Contention's Guy Lodge that the Academy voters wouldn't know how to judge a Best Casting Oscar and it would default to a Best Picture popularity vote. The Academy's largest branch is the actors, and the rest of the Academy is pretty sophisticated about how these things work. This award could open up a particularly strong ensemble with no obvious Oscar-worthy lead role to awards consideration, or an indie film with a brilliant cast like, say, "The Usual Suspects" or "The Outsiders." One answer would be to share the Best Casting prize with the director. 

I was reminded of all this by the Casting Society of America's announcement today of the nominees for the 29th Annual Artios Awards for outstanding achievement in casting, given in 22 categories including film, television and theater. You can tell there is no Oscar category for this because the CSA's NY and LA awards fêtes will take place on Monday, November 18. As you can see from the list below, they are looking back at last year, with no eye for influencing the awards to come. They might want to consider changing this!

This article is related to: Casting By, casting, CASTING WATCH, Documentary, Documentaries, HBO, Awards, Awards


E-Mail Updates