A chill in the movie air
Visitors to Variety’s website, online home of the (cliche alert) industry bible, were, this week, greeted with an advertisement declaring, “It’s that time again.”
Time to start thinking about schoolbooks? Time to buy autumn jumpers? No. The commercial, placed by the PR company that flogged the so-so Crash to the Academy in 2004, announces the formal beginning of the campaign for the 2009 Oscars.
This is becoming absurd. We are now approaching the stage where awards season promotions will begin immediately after the film has been pitched. “Well, we have yet to secure a script, a cast, a director, a producer or a final title, but we have placed a great For Your Consideration ad in The Hollywood Reporter,” Hiram Hype III will soon say.
Let’s play their game and have a speedy glance at the films generating speculative buzz. Many psychics like the sound of Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in Sam Mendes’s Revolutionary Road, but the director’s last films (Road to Perdition and Jarhead) failed to gather any major nominations. The excellent trailer for Oliver Stone’s W, hitherto viewed with suspicion, has reignited hopes for the GeorgeW Bush biopic. Ron Howard’s Frost/Nixon, another crack at a right-wing president, might garner nominations for Frank Langella and Michael Sheen.
Also, look out for Sean Penn in Milk, the story of murdered mayor of San Francisco Harvey Milk, and the Kidbot (Nicole model) in Baz Lurhman’s epic Australia. Among the few talked-about films that have been seen, Clint Eastwood’s Changeling, which received both raves and shrugs in Cannes, appears set for multiple nods.
Oh, who knows? It might be best to put all your money on a long shot – The Love Guru sounds right – and hope for an outbreak of insanity.
A titanic reunion: DiCaprio and Winslet in Revolutionary Road