Covering Cinema From All Across The African Diaspora

2008 Academy Award / Oscar Nominations - My $.02

In honor of tonight's Academy Award celebration, this is a repost of my picks for who will win in the major categories. This was originally posted a month ago, on January 22, soon after the nominees were announced. Looking over the list now, there are a couple of changes I would make, given all that's transpired in the last month. BUT, I'll stick to my original picks!

So, what do you think?

The nominations for the 80th annual Academy Awards were announced Tuesday morning, with "No Country for Old Men" and "There Will Be Blood" leading the way with eight nods each. Not-so surprisingly, "colored" faces are mostly absent this year. Although, I thought the Oprah Winfrey produced, The Great Debaters was a lock for something - whether direction, acting, picture... something. Not that I think it's fully deserving, but I recall hearing much talk about a possible Oscar campaign for the film and its stars, with the Golden Globes leading the charge. Guess not. Oh well... life goes on, right? Ruby Dee's nomination for best supporting actress (American Gangster) is certainly a surprise. I haven't seen the film (no interest) but influenced by her nomination, I'm just might...

Notable omissions: despite all the noise about her NAACP Image Award nomination, Angelina Jolie didn't get any love from the Academy for her portrayal as Mariane Pearl in A Mighty Heart Also, Tommy Lee Jones should have received a nomination for his supporting role in the Coen Brothers western, No Country For Old Men.

Yes, it was a horrible year for blacks on screen folks! There just wasn't much for us to cheer, and it's evident below. Although I think it wasn't a very good year for film in general.

The nominations follow below, along with my selections for who will win in red bold, and other ramblings, in parentheses:

Best Picture

"Atonement" (This will win. Didn't see it. But the word on it is strong)
"Juno" (Over-rated)
"Michael Clayton" (a little puzzled by this one. Saw it... entertaining mostly. Not a best picture nom.)
"No Country for Old Men" (Solid but over-rated)
"There Will Be Blood" (Solid, but without Daniel Day Lewis, it wouldn't be on this list)

Actor in a Leading Role

George Clooney, "Michael Clayton" (Like George Clooney. Not his best)
Daniel Day-Lewis, "There Will Be Blood" (Awesome performance. He was the movie and he will win)
Johnny Depp, "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" (Ho-hum)
Viggo Mortensen, "Eastern Promises" (Didn't see it; a long-shot)

Actress in a Leading Role

Cate Blanchett, "Elizabeth - The Golden Age" (A good actress in a mediocre flick)
Julie Christie, "Away From Her" (Yawn)
Marion Cotillard, "La Vie en Rose" (Eh... *shrugging*... although I think she will win)
Laura Linney, "The Savages" (Didn't see it. Doubt she'll win)
Ellen Page, "Juno" (Over-rated, over-hyped)

Actor in a Supporting Role

Casey Affleck, "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford" (good job, but not his time yet)
Javier Bardem, "No Country for Old Men" (His name is already in the envelope. Although I couldn't get past the funny hair cut)
Hal Holbrook, "Into the Wild" (Memorable film; forgettable role)
Philip Seymour Hoffman, "Charlie Wilson's War" (Yawn)
Tom Wilkinson, "Michael Clayton" (Love the guy; always solid in his roles, even this one. But Bardem's haircut gets the nod this year)

Actress in a Supporting Role

Cate Blanchett, "I'm Not There" (Wow, nominated in 2 categories. Go Cate! She'll win this one. Mesmerizing performance)
Ruby Dee, "American Gangster" (Intriguing selection. Likely a long-shot)
Saoirse Ronan, "Atonement" (Who?)
Amy Ryan, "Gone Baby Gone" (Who?)
Tilda Swinton, "Michael Clayton" (captivating in her business suits; but can't beat Cate as a man)


Julian Schnabel, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" (I think this will be his year)
Jason Reitman, "Juno" (Eh...)
Tony Gilroy, "Michael Clayton" (Shouldn't be on this list)
Joel Coen and Ethan Coen, "No Country for Old Men" (The usual, but no gold this year fellas)
Paul Thomas Anderson, "There Will Be Blood" (Strong 4th outing, since Punch-Drunk Love. But it was Daniel Day Lewis's show)

Writing (Original Screenplay)

Diablo Cody, "Juno" (Aarrghh... no more Juno noms, please!! Although, I think it will win in this category)
Nancy Oliver, "Lars and the Real Girl" (Nope)
Tony Gilroy, "Michael Clayton" (Sorry Tony)
Brad Bird, Jan Pinkava, Jim Capobianco, "Ratatouille" (Interesting selection. Would be even more interesting if it wins)
Tamara Jenkins, "The Savages" (Pass)

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

Christopher Hampton, "Atonement" (Hmmm... I think it's his to lose)
Sarah Polley, "Away From Her" (Word is strong on this one; surprised she wasn't nominated for Director)
Julian Schnabel, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" (Probably not)
Joel Coen and Ethan Coen, "No Country for Old Men" (Again, usual solid work, but not this year)
Paul Thomas Anderson, "There Will Be Blood" (Again, it's Daniel Day Lewis's film)

Alright - that's all folks!


  1. said...

    I can't say anything about it. I'm one who sees half of the Oscar movies around nomination time. LOL.

    I was quite surprised by Ruby Dee's nomination. And yes, like you, with all the yapping about it going to happen, I figured there would be Oscar nominations for Gangster.

    I gotta play catchup, as always.

  2. black | woman | unhinged said...

    Ha, ha, I posted my own picks and my general 2007 film ramblings. It's an all round shitty year for films, (let alone black films).

  3. UK Black Chick aka Wendy said...

    I've only seen two of the films: There Will Be Blood and No Country for Old Men.

    And which do I prefer? Let's just say I'd rather have DDL drink my milkshake than have JB shoot me with a nail gun.

    The only other movies I'm interested in seeing are 'I'm Not There,' 'The Diving Bell and the Butterfly' and, perhaps, 'La Vie En Rose.'

    I don't think I'll be waiting up to watch the show... especially as it'll be on at some God forsaken time over here. And let's be honest, it'll be pretty hard to miss the highlights tomorrow, even if I try.

    Good luck to them all!

  4. said...

    Heh heh :)

    You got most of 'em right!

    I'm impressed! :)

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