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David Poland

By David Poland

20 Weeks To Oscar – Underdogs

18 Weeks To Go
The Golden Undies

This year

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25 Responses to “20 Weeks To Oscar – Underdogs”

  1. Joe Leydon says:

    What about Hal Holbrook in That Evening Sun?

  2. Aladdin Sane says:

    Inglourious Basterds gets in. There’s no way it won’t. I think that TWC would be foolish not to push it.

  3. LYT says:

    I wanna see Woody Harrelson in Zombieland get the “Captain Jack Sparrow” slot — one of the most memorably entertaining characters of the year, and no-one else could have done it in quite the same way.
    Also Sharlto Copley for Best Actor. And if we’re going with Jackie Earle Haley from Watchmen, I’ll stand up for Billy Crudup too, who had the harder task of acting in a goofy Tron suit.

  4. adorian says:

    I thought Whirlwind (with Emily Watson) and Love Song (with Renee Zellweger) were going to be released this year and help complicate the Best Actress guessing. Does anyone know what happened to the distribution fates of these two films?

  5. EthanG says:

    “Whirlwind” is still on the festival circuit, no?
    “My Own Love Song” seems like it’s DOA..dunno.

  6. EthanG says:

    Oh, btw…does “District 9” really have an edge over “Star Trek?” Paramount is supposedly pushing for Trek…I would guess “District 9” between the two, but I wouldnt be surprised either way.

  7. berg says:

    ReD CLiFF

  8. The Big Perm says:

    Harrelson should have been nominated for Natural Born Killers.
    I’d say the best actors in Watchmen were the guy with the ‘stache and the nerdy superhero. I’m too lazy to look them up. Haley was great too.

  9. Cadavra says:

    I know hardly anybody saw it, but it’s a frickin’ shame nobody mentions Michael Sheen and Timothy Spall for their absolutely fantastic work in THE DAMNED UNITED.

  10. christian says:

    And the winner is Christoph Waltz!

  11. Rob says:

    What happens if Mo’Nique wants too much money to show up at the ceremony?

  12. leahnz says:


  13. Agreed Big Perm. Jackie Earle Haley got most of the press, but Patrick Wilson (‘nerdy superhero’ Nite Owl) was the understated heart and soul of Watchmen. For me, Haley’s only truly special moments were the few were he was unmasked.

  14. Rob says:

    So last year, every Oscar-related blog post spawned a million comments about the supposed likelihood of The Dark Knight getting nominated. This year it’s gonna be Watchmen. Oy.
    Although Patrick Wilson is a fantastic actor – Little Children, Hard Candy, Angels in America. More great roles for this guy, please.

  15. David Poland says:

    Who said that Jackie Earle Haley or anything else from Watchmen would be nominated?
    I only said that Jackie deserves a nod for that performance. And he does. And I was not a fan of the movie.
    As far as Dark Knight, I was the one saying that it was not a lock and not even likely.
    And neither District 9 or Star Trek is being nominated for BP. Just not happening. But Sony is pushing D9 harder at this point. Par has a fancy DVD launch tomorrow… but that’s about it at this juncture.

  16. jeffmcm says:

    I much prefer the work done by JE Haley, Crudup, and JD Morgan to the block of wood they cast as Nite Owl.

  17. LYT says:

    I thought the whole argument earlier this year about expanding Best Picture centered on Star Trek (and Dark Knight from last year).
    But that seems to have been forgotten, even by Paramount.

  18. jeffmcm says:

    I think it can be attributed to a couple of things – The Dark Knight is about ten times better than Star Trek, and is actually about, you know, issues and junk. Also it sounds like Paramount doesn’t want to bother spending money on awards campaigns.

  19. IOIOIOI says:

    Cad, Michael Sheen should be nominated for damn near everything he’s in. He’s inadvertently carrying on the power of the SHEEN name. Martin would be so proud of a guy whose real name is his stage name. Seriously, go see the Damned United. It’s a tremendous film.
    That aside, LYT Trek is a great flick. It’s not TDK, but it should be nominated. Why? THAT’S THE FUCKING POINT OF THE TOP TEN! If the TOP TEN is five of the same ol’shit plus five more of the same ol’shit. The Academy really needs to get their head’s out of their asses.

  20. Hallick says:

    “And neither District 9 or Star Trek is being nominated for BP. Just not happening. But Sony is pushing D9 harder at this point. Par has a fancy DVD launch tomorrow… but that’s about it at this juncture.”
    Really? Because I’d put its chances up there ahead of three or four films from your Frontrunners list (The Last Station, Julie & Julia, A Single Man…). And it damn well belongs on an entirely different tier than “Sherlock Holmes”.

  21. Crudup is great; i loved his movies

  22. David Poland says:

    The illusion that Oscars are simply about what movie is “best” is as silly as trying to argue what’s “best” as though there is a consistent objective measure. “Best” is subjective.
    Academy members are not the masses. Nor are they movie geeks or critics. Nor are they sheer elitists.
    The reason why Dark Knight would have been nominated with 10 nominees is because it was a real phenom and Chris Nolan gave it serious aesthetic cache. Star Trek did a lot better than the rest of the series, but was not a phenom and ended up being #5 for the summer domestically, behind The Hangover, Up and the mega-sequels. And JJ is a TV god… but he doesn’t carry the artist label that Nolan does.
    The perception of JJ and the lack of “biggest thing ever” business hum is what is in the way of Star Trek with The Academy, not the movie.
    Avatar faces a problem too. It needs to blaze out of the gate to be seen as being a mega-movie worthy of serious consideration. Cameron has cred. But if the media attaches a scent of the film being a boondoggle, there is not enough time for the film’s actual box office to overcome that before noms close.
    I am not saying that this is the best way for things to go… just that it is the way things tend to go…

  23. IOIOIOI says:

    If it’s the way things tend to go. I would hope they go in a different way. Also, according to some guy I sort of know with bitching chest hair; “Box office does not dictate quality.” You are using box office to make a point, that you are only making because of the film involve. Oh yeah, before you go on a crusade again. Yes, you are the easy to decipher. Nevertheless, Star Trek is the biggest film in that series, and people who have never seen a Star Trek film, saw that film.
    So it’s doing a lot better than you think it is David. Much better.

  24. Lota says:

    this is one of the first years in a really long time where I LOVE the possibilities, so many good performances and far less scenery chewing that usual.
    The problem is the actual movies…many of the movies are just ho hum or pretty good.
    But this is an actor’s year, especially older men and women have really done themselves proud.

  25. leahnz says:

    i would think ‘avatar’, ‘D-9’ and ‘trek’ are all seriously up against it for a ‘best pic’ nom by virtue of their genre alone, unless there is some major paradigm shift in the thinking of the old coots of ‘the academy’, who pooh-pooh and reject sci-fi as ‘not worthy’ as much if not more so than horror and comedy.
    proper sci-fi is rarely recognised for ‘best pic’ honours by academy voters, particularly in the modern era; ‘aliens’ was seven-times oscar nom’d including one for lead acting and still couldn’t manage a ‘best pic’ nod; ‘ET’ is the last sci-fi best pic nom i can think of and that was like 30 years ago
    (perhaps the expansion to 10 nominees will help in the recognition of sci-fi as a serious and legitimate contender. but as much as i enjoyed ‘trek’ i would think it’s too lightweight and lacking in any standout heavy-hitting acting perfs to draw in the required acting branch noms more likely to go to other more acting-centric flicks)

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon