Monday, March 10, 2014

The Playlist's Oscar Look for 2014/Sasha's Early Shot/The Atlantic Takes a Dip in the Oscar Pool

Welcome to Monday...


The Playlist posted its "Premature Oscar Picks" just prior to the weekend and it has most of what are becoming the "usual suspects".  All in all, they included 15 films as Oscar possibilities, leading me to, inevitably, to parse them for possible Telluride '14 potentialities.  Among the 15 Playlist selections that might have some T-ride chances:

Angelina Jolie's "Unbroken".  I'm a little bit higher on the chances that this might make a Telluride appearance this week after the "12 Years a Slave" Best Picture Oscar win last week.  I can hear (in my head) Brad telling Angie that Telluride was a big part of the process that led to that Oscar.  Will distributor Universal think that Telluride is a good idea?  Who knows?

Christopher Nolan's "Interstellar".  Friend of the blog Christopher Schiller has said he thinks this could surprise at Telluride and my thinking is that it makes some sense in the context of the success "Gravity" had this year.  I can see it being a BIG SURPRISE at The Zog...Paramount is the distributor and has had some presence in Telluride previously (including Jason Reitman's "Labor Day" this past year).  I'd be very excited were it to happen and I have raised my estimation of the possibility of its appearance at T-ride...but...honestly, it's still a loooong shot.

Bennett Miller's "Foxcatcher".  Things working in favor of thinking it could make this year's lineup:  Miller (Capote in '05 played T-ride) and the distributor Sony Pictures Classics.  Working against:  Like a lot of people, the decision to move it from 2013 to 2014 makes me wonder about quality issues.

J.C. Chandor's "A Most Violent Year".  Despite "All is Lost" not really catching fire as an Oscar contender this year, I got the impression that Chandor loved his experience at Telluride.  A24 is the distributor and though its resume is short, they have had a substantial presence at Telluride the past couple of years.  "Ginger and Rosa" and "Under the Skin".  So this is a real possibility...and it would be very cool to get Oscar Isaac back to T-ride.  Also cool would be an appearance by Jessica Chastain.

Michel Hazanavicius' "The Search"...reason for:  "The Artist" and its run through Telluride on the way to Oscar in 2011.  Hazanavicius was in Telluride for that.  He could well return.  However, IMDb doesn't list a U.S. distributor yet.  The Weinstein Company had "The Artist".

Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice".  This would be a big "get".  Despite whatever happened regarding why "The Master" did not appear at Telluride in 2012...and I heard a number of reasons...there are a couple of reasons that we might see this film in the San Juans...First, it's under the Warner Brothers banner and Warners has stepped up the last couple of years at Telluride with: "Prisoners" and "Gravity" this past year and they had to be pleased with how that played out (despite the loss of the Best Picture Oscar to "12 Years").  Then there was that "Argo" thing in 2012.  That seemed to work out too.  Reason #2:  PTA has been in Telluride previously with the tribute to Daniel Day Lewis and he 20 min. preview of  "There Will Be Blood" (though one of the narratives about why "The Master" didn't play is that PTA wasn't thrilled with the reception that the sneak peak of TWBB received and admittedly I was a part of that reaction as I wasn't bowled over by what I saw...I have, however, recanted many times since as I have often said after having seen the whole film...more than once...that it's a masterpiece and maybe the best film of the 2000' PTA...if it's my fault, as unlikely as that might be...mea culpa! and come back!)

David Fincher's "Gone Girl".  Fincher was tributed in 2008 and that included "Zodiac" and a preview of "Benjamin Button" and the fest certainly doesn't shy away from the crime genre, into which this film fits.  Ben Affleck in the lead probably boosts the film's chances of making the T-ride list.  20th Century Fox has the distribution and they had a hand in "12 Years a Slave"  20th Century Fox also has another possibility that we'll get to (and that could cut either way).

Morten Tyldum's "The Imitation Game".  The Weinstein Company is involved as distributor here and that certainly doesn't close the door...but it's also no guarantee that we'll see his film either.  TWC had "Tracks" and "Salinger" (as a late added Sneak Preview reportedly replacing "Philomena" and I would have been interested to see if the the Oscar race would have been different had "Philomena" shown at Telluride) at last year's TFF.  But TWC's presence at TFF is also kind of spotty.  Still, "The Imitation Game", the story of Brit Alan Turing, who was instrumental in the breaking of Germany's Enigma code but who was then pilloried for his sexuality, is the kind of film that seems tailor made for Telluride.

Jean Marc Vallee's "Wild"...It's produced by Fox, there's that. The film's description reminds me of the aforementioned "Tracks" and Sean Penn's 2007 TFF film "Into the Wild" but my feeling at the moment is that it's unlikely.

Saul Dibb's "Suite Francaise".  I've periodically mentioned this last year as a Telluride possibility.  It, too, is from TWC.  A World War II film with Michele Williams and Matthias Schoenaerts.  It's a light "maybe".

Tim Burton's "Big Eyes" ...Burton on Colorado Ave., maybe Amy Adams with him ,would be cool.  It's yet another Weinstein film so see above...

Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's "Birdman".  This is probably your most solid bet on the list.  Inarritu has played TFF with "Babel" and "Biutiful" and was there this past year in support of Alfonso Cuaron.  "Birdman" is distributed by Fox Searchlight.  I also bet that this plays Cannes...see Cannes note below.  Final note: please bring Michael Keaton and Emma Stone with you.

The Playlist posts some other awards can see the whole thing here:

Finally, if any of the above are chosen for Cannes, that increases the chances for a Telluride play.


Over at Awards Daily, Sasha Stone has listed some of the films that she thinks could make Oscar waves this coming year...and you'll see a number of the same films listed.

That post is here:

From her notes, what I would add to the films that I have mentioned above is:

"Men, Women and Children" from Jason Reitman.  Reitman has played Telluride with "Juno", "Up in the Air" and last year with "Labor Day".  The first two were well received..."Labor Day's" response was muted. With the"Toronto Ultimatum" in play, you have to wonder which way this film will jump.  As a side note...I am wary of the Adam Sandler casting.


And The Atlantic gets into the act with  a list of Oscar possibles as well.  Here that is:

More on Thursday...

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