Oscar Nominations - News Review

Silly season is upon us again with today seeing the release of the nominations for this year’s OSCARS which may or may not be held in a car park dependent on how much or how little those involved want to annoy the writer’s union.

Who would of thought at this time yesterday that we could now all go to the pub this evening safe in the knowledge that Norbit is now an OSCAR nominated film? Alas as of this afternoon that fact is true with the Eddie Murphy ‘comedy’ (a term used here in the loosest possible way) being nominated in the category for achievement in make-up and could potentially soon be able to call itself an OSCAR winner. It will be interesting, not only to see if it wins, but to see if it is granted the re-opening at hundreds of cinemas nationwide that many OSCAR winners and nominees are once the news has had chance to permeate into society – hands up who’ll be going to see it again.

Second largest shock of the afternoon is awarded to the non-nomination for Atonement’s Keira Knightley in the best actress category. Knightley misses out despite the fact that the film gained 7 nominations, unsurprisingly the highest of any British film. The key though is the fact that the majority of the film’s nominations are in peripheral categories suggesting Hollywood may only be willing to pay lip-service to the adaptation of Ian McEwan’s novel and influencing predictions for the Best Picture category; how can Atonement win when neither of its two main stars or its Director are nominated for their respective awards?

In terms of shoe-ins Daniel Day-Lewis looks the most certain person in years to take Best Actor for There Will Be Blood with Ladbrokes.com reflecting that with what can only be described as conservative odds of 1/8. Similarly the bookmaker is heavily backing the Coen’s No Country for Old Men to the tune of 8/11 to take away Best Picture although they seem to have forgotten about the Day-Lewis vehicle currently sitting third with a very tempting 4/1 while both film’s directors seem set to battle it out in their category. It was long ago decided by virtually everyone that Ratatouille would walk away with Best Animated Feature and Javier Bardem should pick up another award for Best Supporting Actor in No Country…

The actress categories however appear as wide open as they have been in quite a while. The omission of Knightley leads to Julie Christie being installed as the favourite for Best Actress but even outsiders Cate Blanchett (16/1) and Laura Linney (25/1) have realistic chances of being handed gongs by the establishment a trend which continues in Supporting Actress which truly is anybody’s guess!

After nominations journalists always talk about favourites and suddenly every man and his dog becomes an expert on picking winners. The Actress categories will at least ensure some healthy speculation right up until the night this year and don’t be surprised if one of the favourites falls at the final hurdle (remember Crash coming from nowhere to win Best Picture?) but all in all it should be a fairly predictable evening… if it happens, which in true OSCAR style is also available for a punt. The odds? 4/1 its cancelled, 1/7 it happens… should be a safe bet then.

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