Thursday, October 20, 2016

The FAC Updates Supporting Acting and Screenplay Categories / Herzog's Inferno Has a Trailer / "The Next Big Thing"? Moonlight's Barry Jenkins / Oscar Biz Buzz

Good Thursday Troupers!


Last Thursday I updated the four major categories as the New York Film Festival was drawing to a close.  That fest has concluded and it's time to update the Supporting Acting and Screenplay categories and assess whether the screenings in New York shifted the landscape (they did...a bit).

Kris Tapley maybe summed it up best when he tweeted earlier this week:

Though Tapley doesn't mention the film by name, it seems pretty obvious that he's talking about Ang Lee's Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk.  And you'll see some of the effect of its NYFF reception as we go through the categories I'm updating today.  So without further dithering...

Here's the latest FAC snapshot for four major Oscar categories that I originally posted back on Sept. 29th.  

I have used the publicly available Oscar predictions from the following pundits:

Erik Anderson/Awards Watch
Clayton Davis/Awards Circuit
Greg Ellwood/The Playlist-Awards Campaign
Scott Feinberg/The Hollywood Reporter
Joey Magidson/Hollywood News
Nathaniel Rogers/Film Experience
Sasha Stone/Awards Daily
Kristopher Tapley/Variety-InContention
Anne Thompson/Indiewire

The number in parenthesis is the position the film held three weeks ago.

TFF #43 films are in Bold.


1) Naomie Harris/Moonlight (1)
2) Michelle Williams/Manchester by the Sea (2)
3) Nicole Kidman/Lion (3)
4)Greta Gerwig/20th Century Women (6)
5) Kristen Stewart/Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (4)

6) Octavia Spencer/Hidden Figures (5)
7) Janelle Monae/Hidden Figures (NR)
8) Lupita N'yong'o/The Queen of Katwe (7)
9) Helen Mirren/Eye in the Sky (10)
10) Felicty Jones/A Monster Calls (8)

On the Cusp: Molly Shannon/Other People
Dropping Off: Margo Martindale/The Hollars
Hot: Gerwig and Monae.
Cold: N'yong'o

Comment:  The NYFF Billy Lynn response doesn't seem to have hurt Stewart much (but wait until you get to Adapted Screenplay below).  Gerwig definitely benefits from a strong positive NYFF response to 20th Century Women.

Harris and Williams seem like locks even this early in the scheme of things.  Kidman is close to lock status as well.


1) Liam Neeson/Silence (1)
2) Hugh Grant/Florence Foster Jenkins (2)
3) Jeff Bridges/Hell or High Water (6)
4) Lucas Hedges/Manchester by the Sea (4)
5) Michael Shannon/Nocturnal Animals (5)

6) Mahershala Ali/Moonlight (3)
7) Stephen Henderson/Fences (7)
8) Aaron Eckhardt/Bleed for This (8)
9) Peter Saarsgard/Jackie (9)
10) Steve Martin/Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (10)

On the Cusp: Kevin Costner/Hidden Figures
No Drops
Hot: Bridges
Cold: Ali

Comment: Steve Martin also not affected by Billy Lynn's NYFF response...yet.  I don't think anyone is a lock in this category just yet.  The top six look like where the nominees will come from and are tightly bunched using The FAC metric but positions 7-9 are definitely possible.


1) Fences (2)
2) Silence (3)
3) Lion (4)
4) Arrival (5)
5) Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (1)

6) Hidden Figures (6)
7) Love and Friendship (8)
8) Live by Night (10)
9) Sully (9)
10) Nocturnal Animals (7)

On the Cusp: Indignation
No Drops
Hot: ?????
Cold: Billy Lynn, Nocturnal Animals

Comment:  Here's your first solid evidence that Oscar experts are factoring in the NYFF reactions to Billy Lynn as the film's screenplay drops a precipitous four spots.  I fully expect that when check back into this category next time that Billy Lynn will have slid even further.

Fences, Silence and Lion are very, very tightly bunched.


1) Manchester by the Sea (1)
2) La La Land (2)
3) Moonlight (3)
4) 20th Century Women (6)
5) Loving (4)

6) Jackie (5)
7) Hell or High Water (7)
8) The Lobster (8)
9) Captain Fantastic (10)
10) Florence Foster Jenkins (9)

On the Cusp: Miss Sloane
No Drops
Hot: 20th Century Women
Cold: Nada

Comment: Another sign that 20th Century Women made some waves in New York evidenced by its rise in this category.

For now Manchester seems the only lock and has a sturdy lead over La La Land, which is near lock status.

If The FAC is 100% accurate then Telluride 2016 films will add the following:

Manchester by the Sea adds three nominations.
Moonlight adds two nominations with a possible third.
La La Land adds one nomination.
Arrival adds one nomination.
Sully adds a possible nomination.
Bleed for This adds a possible nomination.

If all goes according to plan, next Thursday's post will include an early look at Film Editing, Cinematography, Original Score and Original Song categories.


Werner Herzog's volcanic documentary, Into the Inferno, dropped a new trailer this week.  Here it is from YouTube:

Here's coverage of the trailer release from:


One of the hottest titles critically since Telluride has been Barry Jenkins' Moonlight.  The film has captivated film goers at every stop it has made along the way.  It could well turn into one of the two or three best reviewed films of the fall season before it's all said and done.  Currently the film has a 98 at both Metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes.  

Will that translate to Oscar success?  The stories above and below seem to indicate that it probably will earn several nominations.

All of this has led Indiewire's Eric Kohn to proclaim that Jenkins is "the next big thing".  I've been telling my students the same thing since I got back from the festival.

Now, as Moonlight gets ready tom open for general audiences (it opens tomorrow) a number of outlets are doing pieces about Jenkins and the film including the Indiewire article.  Those are linked below:

The complete profile of Jenkins from Indiewire is here.

And also a profile from The Ringer.


At the start of this week we got Oscar nomination updates from two of the nine experts that I use for The FAC.  Both Scott Feinberg of The Hollywood Reporter and Clayton Davis of Awards Watch posted new predictions in the wake of the conclusion of the New York Film Festival.  Those very recent predictions are factored into the latest FAC listings above. 

Feinberg is currently predicting the 21 feature categories with most categories divided into Frontrunners, Major Threats, Possibilities and Long Shots.  I'm focusing on the Frontrunners and Major Possibilities here.  

According to Feinberg, La La Land would land 13 nominations and is listed as a Major Threat for two others.  The nominations would be: Best Picture, Director, Actress, Actor, Original Screenplay, Original Score, two for Original Song, Film Editing, Cinematography, Production Design, Sound Mixing and Sound Editing.  The two other Major Threats are an additional Original Song possibility and also Best Costumes.  My personal count has been at 12.  I haven't been thinking about a nomination for Production Design.

Manchester by the Sea would grab six nominations: Best Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actress, Supporting Actor and Original Screenplay.  Feinberg also says it's a Major Threat for two other nominations: Film Editing and Original Score.

Moonlight would earn six nominations for Best Picture, Director, Supporting Actress, Supporting Actor, Original Screenplay and Film Editing.  It also is a Major Threat for nominations for Cinematography and Original Score.

Sully could two nominations for Best Picture, and Best Actor and is a Major Threat for five more: Director, Adapted Screenplay, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing and Visual Effects.

Feinberg says that Telluride documentary features with the best shot at a nomination are: The Eagle Huntress, The Ivory Game and Fire at Sea.

Best chances for Best Foreign Language Film from TFF #43 are Fire at Sea and Toni Erdmann. He lists Neruda as a Major Threat.

Feinberg has Arrival on the outside looking in with no listing stronger than a "Possibility".

Feinberg's Telluride tally would be 32 nominations with an additional 12 Major Threats.

Meanwhile, Clayton Davis at Awards Watch could not have a more different take on Denis Villenueve's Arrival.

Awards Watch currently has the Oscar race predicted as follows:

La La Land with 12 nominations: Best Picture, Director, Actress, Actor, Original Screenplay, Production Design, Cinematography, Film Editing, Costumes, Sound Editing and two for Best Song.  AW also suggests that another three nominations are possible: Another for Best Song as well as Original Score and Sound Mixing.

Arrival rivals La La Land in Davis' estimation with ten predicted nominations: Best Picture, Director, Adapted Screenplay, Production Design, Cinematography, Film Editing, Original Score, Visual Effects, Sound Mixing and Sound Editing.  Arrival also is listed with a "possible" nomination for Best Actress.

Manchester by the Sea would have four nominations: Best Picture, Actor, Supporting Actress and Original Screenplay.  It's also suggested as a possible nominee for Director, Supporting Actor and Film Editing.

Moonlight would be nominated for three Oscars: Best Picture, Supproting Actor and Original Screenplay.  It has another couple of possibilities: Director and Original Screenplay.

Sully would have a single nomination for Film Editing but be a possible nominee for five other categories including Best Picture, Actor, Adapted Screenplay, Sound Editing and Sound Mixing.

Toni Erdmann is suggested as a Best Foreign Language Film nominee as well as a possibility for Original Screenplay.

Neruda would be nominated for Best Foreign Language Film.

The Eagle Huntress would be a Best Doc nominee with Fire at Sea a possibility.

The Awards Watch Telluride tally would be 33 nominations with an additional 14 possibilities.

The complete rundown from Awards Watch can be accessed here.

That's a wrap for Thursday.  Have a great weekend!


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