Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Oscar Talk: Writing

I felt quite a disconnect with the Academy’s decisions for the screenplays – I’d have nominated only three of their ten choices (my own nominees here), sometimes you get the feeling that voters aren’t willing to believe that a fine film could have writing that’s less than top-notch, although I’ll applaud them for not nominating Black Swan – a good film, but not a screenplay worthy of “best-of” citations. Ironically, that nomination would have been better than one, perhaps two, of the actual nominees. But, digressions... let’s take a look at the field.

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
The logic that because deems Toy Story III an adaptation is ridiculous – being a sequel does not make it an adaptation. All five of the nominees are in consideration for Best Picture, but this is essentially looking like a one-horse race.

NOMINEES: 127 Hours (Simon Beaufoy and Danny Boyle) / The Social Network (Aaron Sorkin) / Toy Story III (Michael Arndt, John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich) / True Grit (Joel Coen and Ethan Coen) / Winter’s Bone (Debra Granik and Anne Rossellini) Prediction: The Social Network Alternate: Toy Story III

I have it as an alternate, because it’s the most likely upset – but it’s unlikely either way. Sure, it’s the final branch of the trilogy, so there would be goodwill, but it’s not happening. And, really, I don’t mind. With neither Rabbit Hole nor The Ghost Writer in consideration I’m fine with The Social Network taking the prize.
         
ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
This one is more interesting. I’m not the biggest fan of Inception, although I can appreciate that it has its fan, but I find it difficult to understand how it won the WGA (over Cholodenko and Blumberg).

NOMINEES: Another Year (Mike Leigh) / The Fighter (Paul Attanasio, Lewis Colich, Eric Johnson, Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy) / Inception (Chris Nolan) / The Kids Are All Right (Stuart Blumberg and Lisa Cholodenko) / The King’s Speech (David Seidler) Prediction: The King’s Speech Alternate: Inception

Seidler wasn’t eligible for the WGA, and in a perfect world it’d be between he and Cholodenko/Blumberg. Well, actually, in reality The Kids Are All Right would win this prize easily, but The King’s Speech is not a terrible alternative. It’s the likely winner here – I don’t anticipate a Nolan upset, but if one were to occur it’d be this.
        
It makes for rather tepid predictions, but I suppose there’s some comfort in predictability....right? Are you praying for any upsets in the screenplay field?

1 comment:

TomS said...

Of all of the names that might get called out as winners on Sunday, I would give the loudest cheer if David Seidler's name is called ...not only for his stellar (and exhaustively re-worked) screenplay... but because this work is a lifelong--literally life-long--labor of love. It would be a truly wonderful moment for Oscar.