THE FAC UPDATES BEST PICTURE AND DIRECTOR OSCAR CANDIDATES
Our last look at the Best Picture and Director categories for The Film Awards Clearinghouse came on Nov. 3 and the intervening month has seen some changes. Here's a look at where those two categories stand as we end the first week of December.
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
TFF #43 films are in Bold. The film's previous position follows its title in parentheses.
1) La La Land (1)
2) Moonlight (4)
3) Manchester by the Sea (2)
4) Fences (3)
5) Hell or High Water (12)
6) Lion (5)
7) Silence (6)
8) Arrival (8)
9) Sully (10)
10) Loving (9)
11) Jackie (7)
12) Hacksaw Ridge (NR)
Hot: Moonlight, Jell or High Water, Hacksaw Ridge
Not: Jackie, Live by Night
On the Cusp: Hidden Figures
Comment: The Oscar experts can say that the early critical awards don't matter in as far as Oscar is concerned all the want, but what else explains the bump for Moonlight and the sky-rocketing fortunes of David Mackenzie's Hell or High Water. Those experts have been affected by something over the last month. Meanwhile, Ben Affleck's Live by Night has taken a nose dive.
Telluride looks good for 3-5 Best Picture nominations.
1) Damien Chazelle/La La Land (1)
2) Barry Jenkins/Moonlight (3)
3) Kenneth Lonergan/Manchester by the Sea (2)
4) Martin Scorsese/Silence (4)
5) Denzel Washington/Fences (5)
6) Denis Villeneuve/Arrival (6)
7) Pablo Larrian/Jackie (7)
8) Garth Davis/Lion (8)
9) Jeff Nichols/ Loving (9)
10) David Mackenzie/Hell or High Water (NR)
Not: Clint Eastwood/Sully
On the Cusp: Mel Gibson/Hacksaw Ridge
Comment: A very stable category over the last month. Scorsese's spot at #4 might indicate that Silence is in better shape for a Best Pic nomination than its #7 rank would indicate.
AN EARLY PEEK AT TFF#44 POSSIBILITIES
Each year any number of film outlets lay out their "most anticipated" lists for the following year. Normally those get published at the beginning of January and provide the first glimpse of what films lie ahead and, as a result give some clues about films that might make The SHOW.
This year, for whatever reason, The Playlist has jumped on the topic early.., a month early. They posted their 100 Most Anticipated 2017 films on Tuesday. It caught me a bit off guard and I thought that I might just pin the article and come back to it in a month or so I thought, "Why not?".
Consequently, I prepped my commentary Tuesday and Wednesday. One of the things that I did was to look back at the past three years of the very same lists to see how much it corresponds to what actually happened over Labor Day weekend. I wasn't very good at picking films from last year's list but was better in 2015 and 2014. Here's what I mean:
Last year, from the 100 films that The Playlist mentioned, seven made the TFF lineup: Neruda, Una, Things to Come, Moonlight, Manchester by the Sea, La La Land and Arrival (which was titled The Story of Your Life at the time). The only film among them that I named: Neruda. Just for hoots, I went back and discovered that I first mentioned both La La Land and Moonlight for the first time in March. Manchester had already been on the MTFB radar the year before.
In 2015 the list included: Carol, Beasts of No Nation, Black Mass, Suffragette and Spotlight which I included on my Telluride-possibles as well as Room, 45 Years and Steve Jobs which I did not list.
In 2014 the list included: The Lunchbox, Mommy, Tracks and Wild that I didn't name for TFF but did include three films that I did pick: Birdman, Foxcatcher and Mr. Turner.
So, the conclusion is that somewhere on the list for 2017 are probably 7-8 titles that make the TFF #44 program and I'll get about three of them right out of the list of 20 guesses I have below. Not the best odds, but I'm shooting in the dark here.
Here are the films listed by their position on The Playlist's list:
98- Redoubtable-Michel Hazanavicius' take of the life of film legend Jean-Luc Godard.
92- A Fantastic Woman- from Sebastian Lelio who brought his Gloria to T-ride in 2013.
90-The Lovers- from A24
85- Battle of the Sexes- Billy Jean King versus Bobby Riggs with Emma Stone and Steve Carell. Produced by Danny Boyle
76- Lady Bird- The Playlist suggests Telluride as a possibility.
64- Wind River-from The Weinstein Company, because I think they'll be back at TFF.
62-Tully- Could Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody return?
57- Mektoub is Mektoub- Abdellatif Kechiche's follow up to Blue is the Warmest Color.
55- The Current War- Weinsteins
51-The Other Side of Hope- Maybe Aki Kauismaki (Le Harve/TFF 2011) returns.
41- Molly's Game-Could Aaron Sorkin return to T-ride with his directing debut? It might depend on how he felt about the reception for Steve Jobs. Maybe this gets Jessica Chastain into town.
33- Mudbound- Playlist mentions it as a possibility for Telluride.
28- Lean on Pete Andrews-Andrew Haigh could return after the success he had at T-ride with 45 Years.
25- Downsizing- Alexander Payne with Matt Damon starring. Will likely start next summer's first "Ten Bets" list at the number one spot.
24- Loveless- Andrey Zvyagintsev had a great Telluride bow with his Leviathan in 2014. Could portend a return.
21- Suburbicon- George Clooney directing. I've always thought that Clooney was a good bet to come back to TFF. He seemed to have such a good time there when he received a tribute in 2009 (Up in the Air). This could be the ticket.
17-The Shape of Water- I've thought since Alfonso Cuaron made the trip with Gravity in 2013 that we'd probably see Guillermo Del Toro someday. Del Toro is the third of the three amigos, Alejandro Inarritu being the other and Inarritu has practically been a Telluride citizen over the years (Babel, Biutiful, Birdman). The Shape of Water seems like the kind of smaller Del Toro that could crack the TFF lineup.
16- Mother- Darren Aronofsky directs. His success with Black Swan in 2010 makes a return a possibility.
15- You Were Never Really Here- Will Lynne Ramsay return after her success in 2011 with We Need to Talk about Kevin?
9- Wonderstruck-Todd Haynes. Past Telluride's : I'm Not There (2007) and Carol (2015). Please return and bring Julianne Moore with you.
5- Happy End- Michael Haneke- Cache, The White Ribbon and Amour have all played T-ride so this seems likely.
The complete ;list of 100 films plus some bonus titles is here from The Playlist.
Although, I feel like I've detected a trend last couple of years toward shying away from this kind of obviousness in the program's curation. Maybe it's just me, but no Audiard/Dheepan in 2015, for example.
One other note...The Playlist's #1 most anticipated is the announced Paul Thomas Anderson/Daniel Day Lewis collaboration on a film set in the fashion world of 1950's New York. Yes, it will be my most anticipated as well but I'll actually be surprised if it's ready in time for a 2017 date. My guess would be a Cannes 2018 play with perhaps a NYFF screening and maybe an AFI screening as well. I want to be wrong on all counts and see it in Telluride in 9 months.
AFI NAMES 2016'S BEST FILMS
Announced this afternoon are the American Film Institutes's Best Films of 2016:
Arrival Fences Hacksaw Ridge Hell or High Water La La Land Manchester Moonlight Silence Sully Zootopia
It's an impressive showing for Telluride as five of the ten films played this year's fest: Arrival, La La Land, Manchester by the Sea, Moonlight and Sully.
You can find more about the AFI list here from Indiewire.
Otherwise, back here on Monday...
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