Tuesday, January 24, 2012

And here are your 2011 Academy Award Screenwriting Nominations!

For a full list of all of the nominations, head over to Slash-Film.  Basically, the writing nominations this year are sort of lacking.  There's nothing that sexy, nothing with any HUGE buzz attached to it.  In the adapted category, I'm thinking the bigger names have a leg up on the competition. That means Moneyball and The Descendents are your frontrunners (Payne, Zallian and Sorkin are hard to say no to).  If you asked me which SCRIPT was the best, I would say "The Ides Of March."  I remember reading that when it was Farragut North and really liking it. I just don't think it has the cache to stand up to those other films.

The original category is more interesting (as it usually is).  I mean, it has Bridesmaids in there.  Now let me say this.  I REALLY LIKED Bridesmaids.  But if a straight comedy gets an Oscar nomination in screenwriting, it's probably a weak year.  I'm a little surprised to see Margin Call in there.  I liked the script and I loved JC Chandor's success story (he struggled his ass off before writing this script). But he's likewise probably helped by a weak year as well.  The Artist has a shot but I find it hard to believe people will give a screenwriting Oscar to a movie with no dialogue (I'm not saying *I* would penalize it - I'm saying others probably will).  I'll be honest.  I don't even know what "A Separation" is.  So I can't comment on that.  And that leaves us with the huge favorite in the group, Midnight in Paris.  Allen will almost certainly win this one.

Some people have asked how I feel about Drive being snubbed by the voters.  I can't say I'm surprised.  It's just a weird little movie and I'm not sure they campaigned for it very well.  So I'm a little bummed but I'll get over it.  Here are the nominations.

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

“The Descendants” (Fox Searchlight) Screenplay by Alexander Payne and Nat Faxon & Jim Rash
“Hugo” (Paramount) Screenplay by John Logan
“The Ides of March” (Sony Pictures Releasing) Screenplay by George Clooney & Grant Heslov and Beau Willimon
“Moneyball” (Sony Pictures Releasing) Screenplay by Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin Story by Stan Chervin
“Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” (Focus Features) Screenplay by Bridget O’Connor & Peter Straughan

Writing (Original Screenplay)

“The Artist” (The Weinstein Company) Written by Michel Hazanavicius
“Bridesmaids” (Universal) Written by Annie Mumolo & Kristen Wiig
“Margin Call” (Roadside Attractions) Written by J.C. Chandor
“Midnight in Paris” (Sony Pictures Classics) Written by Woody Allen
“A Separation” (Sony Pictures Classics) Written by Asghar Farhadi