Awards season is upon us again and just as the winners of the Golden Globes are announced, the buzz increases for the most acclaimed awards of the season, The Oscars, as the nominees are revealed.
And the nominees are…
No shocks here – Gravity and American Hustle lead the pack with ten nominations each, closely followed by Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave with nine. American Hustle was shortlisted in all four acting categories for its stars Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence. It is also up for best picture alongside Gravity, which earned a best director nod for Alfonso Cuaron and best actress for Sandra Bullock. 12 Years a Slave’s nine nominations included best director and picture. The film’s stars Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender and Lupita Nyong’o were also nominated in the best actor, supporting actor and supporting actress categories.
But before Oscar veterans such as Judy Dench, Saundra Bullock and Christian Bale prepare to add to their, already full, trophy cabinets they should be prepared to face some fresh competition from a few new faces that emerged on the movie scene this year.
Barkhard Abdi who plays Somali pirate leader Muse in Captain Phillips has been nominated for Best Supporting Actor. The son of a teacher, Abdi fled Somalia’s civil war aged seven and was working as a chauffeur in the US when he was cast by director Paul Greengrass. However, before being cast Abdi had never acted at all, which I think makes him the worthy underdog for this nomination.
Another emerging talent, and one to watch, is Lupita Nyong’o who has been acclaimed with a nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Patsey in 12 Years a Slave. Director Steve McQueen auditioned over 1000 women for this role but knew he had found Patsey when he saw Lupita’s screen test, and as a result, flew her straight to the set in New Orleans to start filming.
Snubs and Surprises
As always the 2014 Academy Awards were not without many snubs and surprises. It came as a shock to many (including myself) that Tom Hanks was not recognised for his role in Captain Phillips this year – a performance I believe was, by far, his best in over a decade.
Similarly, another shock came with the absence of our favourite Brit, Idris Elba, for his portrayal of Nelson Mandela in addition to the complete lack of recognition for Lee Daniel’s The Butler.
Only time will tell who will be acclaimed with a prestigious golden statue, so until March here are a few of my predictions:
I have a sneaking suspicion that 12 Years a Slave will walk away with the most awards this year, although, I do believe Alfonso Cuaron will nab the Best Director Award from Steve McQueen.
I hope Amy Adams picks up the statue for Best Actress this year, after five nominations in the supporting actress category I feel her time is now, but sadly I sense she may miss out again to Cate Blanchett.
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