Thursday, 24 February 2011

Random Oscar Trivia: Andrew & the Best Actor

Okay, time for some random trivia (and by random, I mean superfluous) via yours truly. I was thinking today how often I’m completely off when it comes to the Oscars’ choices – which I think we all can lay claim to, but I’m especially off with their Best Actor decisions. Take this year for instance, none of my top three Actors are nominated (Eckhart, Dorff, Gosling) but I’m all behind Firth’s inevitable Oscar win. Which made me wonder, how often has my favourite of the year actually been nominated for an Oscar – let alone won? I always end up feeling a profound dissonance with the Academy’s male decisions. Sure, the odd Joan Allen in The Upside of Anger or Annette Bening in RunniNg With Scissors (truly brilliant Actress performances that got no love) might turn up, but I’m way off more often with the men. Case in point: the last eleven years.
My Picks (highest major awards’ honour in brackets)
2010: Aaron Eckhart in Rabbit Hole
2009: Ben Whishaw in Bright Star
2008: Leonardo DiCaprio in Revolutionary Road (Golden Globe Nomination)
2007: Brad Pitt in The Assassination of Jesse James
2006: Leonardo DiCaprio in The Departed (SAG Guild Nomination, Supporting Actor)
2005: Viggo Mortensen in A History of Violence (Golden Globe Nomination)
2004: Jude Law in Closer (Golden Globe Nomination)
2003: Sean Penn in Mystic River (Oscar Win)
2002: Daniel Day Lewis in Gangs of New York (Oscar Nomination)
2001: Ethan Hawke in Training Day (Oscar Nomination, Supporting Actor)
2000: Javier Bardem in Before Night Falls (Oscar Nomination)
And the Academy’s Picks (and where they placed in my awards)
2010: ? – Firth probably, for The King’s Speech (top 5, best of the nominees)
2009: Jeff Bridges in Crazy Heart
2008: Sean Penn in Milk (top 10)
2007: Daniel Day Lewis in There Will Be Blood (top 5, best of the nominees)
2006: Forrest Whitaker in The Last King of Scotland (top 10)
2005: Philip Seymour Hoffman in Capote (top 5, best of the nominees)
2004: Jamie Foxx in Ray (loathed this performance)
2003: Sean Penn in Mystic River (favourite of the year)
2002: Adrien Brodey in The Pianist (top 10)
2001: Denzel Washington in Training Day (top 5)
2000: Russell Crow in Gladiator (top 5)
I’m currently on a seven year streak of having my favourite Actor performances not turn up at the Academy. I’m sort of proud of that, though, in my twisted brain it just goes to show how much wiser than Oscar voters I am. Or, it’s just proof of how deliberately unusual (read: peculiar) my choices are. I feel sort of insular, though; like the Academy I haven’t chosen a comedic leading male in this category in a long time (FYI: I’d have given Joseph Fiennes a nomination AND win for Shakespeare in Love if I had the powers).

Despite my disagreement between the Academy and I there’s only one winner in the last decade that I absolutely hated – that was Foxx. He and Bridges are actually the one two winners who didn’t even crack my top ten. I don’t loathe Bridges work in Crazy Heart, and I don’t grudge him his Oscar – I just find the film and him in iT, ultimately tedious.
As far as excitability goes, this year’s actor race seems set to be a repeat of last year’s with nary a surprise in sight. But, I don’t grudge Colin his win – I’m rooting for him, even he’s not my personal pick. When was the last time your favourite matched with Oscar? Are you as unlucky as picking the Best Actors (as far as AMPAS is concerned) as I?


TomS said...

Andrew, I feel this way about almost ALL of the categories...Best Picture most of all.
Last time my Oscar picked my fave as Best Actor was Sean Penn in "Milk"..Before that, maybe Geoffrey Rush in "Shine"...

Walter L. Hollmann said...

Aw, I was thinking of doing this, too. You beat me to it!

I really only have a record of 2006 onward, but I've been keeping track since 2005. I can say with confidence that my friend Oscar and I usually have much in common, with 2006 being my only unique year - the closest my nominees came to matching Oscar was Leo DiCaprio for The Departed.

2010 - Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network (nom)
2009 - Sam Rockwell, Moon (but now I feel like it should've been Firth for A Single Man)
2008 - Mickey Rourke, The Wrestler (nom)
2007 - Daniel Day-Lewis, There Will be Blood (OSCAR)
2006 - Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat
2005 - Philip Seymour Hoffman, Capote (OSCAR)

You are going to look at this for other categories, right? Because I want to know!

Robert said...

Well, I haven't been keeping up with the Oscars for very long (like, last year was the first year I really tried to watch as many nominees as possible) but I think that Sean Penn is probably the most recent matchup for me.

I love your diverse actor list though! Gosh, Aaron Eckhart, Ben Whishaw...such great choices.

Amir said...

For me, best supporting actor is even worse. This year is surprisingly good, but they always waste at least two spots on mediocre performances.