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Nov 23 2016

Best Director Chart Revisions

by Nathaniel R

This morning's update -the Best Director chart.And just as I'd finished those chart updates theSilencetrailer arrived so we'll discuss that later today.So much happens all at once.

Speaking of.You don't want to see the way my doorman looks at me whenever I walk into the building - there's always a new stack of packages from the studios to sign for.Today alone there have been 4 deliveries of multiple packages.Why must campaign teams wait until the day before Thanksgiving to send everything?It's overwhelming really.It's the same as the studios waiting until the second half of December to release all movies ever.

But back to the topic at hand - Best Director Hopefuls.We'll divvy them up into 3 categories after the jump...

Previous Winners
We've long suspected that 2016's Best Director race would be largely a newbie year.But several previous Oscar winners are theoretically in the mix,some much more than others of course.Martin Scorsese,Clint Eastwood,and Mel Gibson (with Hacksaw Ridge as "comeback"of sorts...I know I'm probably underestimating him on the charts but I need a break from toxic masculinity given this election cycle) have all previously won the Best Director Oscar.Much longer shots for honors in Best Director like Ben Affleck,Pedro Almodóvar,and Spirit nominee Andrea Arnold (American Honey) are all previous Oscar winners,too,though they won their golden men in other categories (Picture & Original Screenplay,Original Screenplay & Foreign Language Film,and Live Action Short Film respectively).Not Pictured: Denzel Washington!He's won two Oscars for acting but will the Academy welcome him into the Director's club for Fences,亚博主页admiring the way he stays out of the play's way (such a godsend and relief!) or will they want directors doing more visible directing?

No Previous Oscar Love
Barry Jenkins (Moonlight) and Jeff Nichols (Loving) are both Spirit nominees for their direction this year and are  definitely in the hunt for their first Oscar nominations but will they make that competitive shortlist?Much longer shots who also made very well regarded films this year but who Oscar has never noticed are Garth Davis (fresh offTop of the LakebeforeLion),Mike Mills (20th Century Womenwho previously directed Christopher Plummer to his Oscar win inBeginners),David Mackenzie (Hell or High Water whose best known previous features were the racy Ewan MacGregor dramaYoung Adamand the prison dramaStarred Upwhich helped make Jack O'Connell and in-demand young actor) and actor turned director Matt Ross (Captain Fantastic).Not pictured: Debut directors and extreme long shots this year include Robert Eggers (The Witch) and Nate Parker (Birth of a Nation).There's also Theodore Melfi who is definitely gaining momentum in his directorial career with the one-two punch ofSt VincentandHidden Figures)

Previous Nominations* but not for Best Director
(*TFE counts a Foreign Language Film as a nomination for its director even though they only began officially putting the directors name on the statue very very recently.)
Our final category!A mix of the frontrunner,three whose films are definitely in the mix,and two extreme long shots.They've all been nominated* previously.From left to right: Paul Verhoeven (Elle) was previously in the Oscar race for The Netherland'sTurkish Delight(1973),Denis Villeneuve (Arrival) was previously in the Oscar race for Canada'sIncendies(2010),Kenneth Lonergan (Manchester by the Sea) was previously in the Oscar race for writingYou Can Count On Meand co-writingGangs of New York(2000),Damien Chazelle (La La Land) was previously in the Oscar race for writingWhiplash(2014),Pablo Larraín (Jackie) was previously in the Oscar race for Chile'sNo(2012),and Mira Nair (Queen of Katwe) was previously in the Oscar race for India'sSalaam Bombay!(1988).

Current Feeling
I suspect Damien Chazelle is going to win even ifLa La Landis surprisingly defeated in the final round for something heavier.How about you?

(acting up next)

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Reader Comments (20)

So,if you're counting wins in other categories,shouldn't Denzel be B&W?

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

oh that's only Best Director wins on the actual chart page.

November 23,2016 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Wasn't as impressed with The Silence trailer as others seem to be.

Andrew Garfield's accent sounds really wonky - I think it's safe to delete his name from potentiel nominees,even though The Academy has,on occasion,overlooked shaky accents and focused on the performance itself.But Garfield,while obviously committed,has some strange line-readings in the trailer.
I wouldn't count on him getting a Lead Actor nomination - not for Silence,not for Hacksaw Ridge either - even though it would fun to have ex-lovers Emma Stone and him compete on the same night!

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterUlrich

Nathaniel: Don't forget that although the Academy is now putting the director's name on the statuette for Forteign Langauge Film,it is still only the country that is the official nominee/winner.

I bet your doorman is feeling the same about campaign teams as you!:-)

As for who will win...I haven't seen La La Land (I suspect I'll have to wait until it opens in the UK) but Chazelle does seem to have a very good chance.And there doesn't seem to be a tech juggernaut like Life of Pi,Gravity,Birdman or The Revenant in the mix this year...unless I'm missing something?Maybe Arrival but it's not as ostentatiously well-made...

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

I had no idea Matt Ross directed 'Captain Fantastic'.I know it's been getting good reviews so it should have been on my "must watch"anyway,but thats what has swung it for me.Thanks for making me aware,Nat!

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterThe Jack

Driver and Garfield are too contemporary for the movie.

November 23,2016 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

Am I the only who's bothered by how much Garfield bobbed his head while delivering his lines at the beginning of the Silence trailer?

November 23,2016 | Unregistered Commenterguest

^ No,you're not the only one!

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterUlrich

With you except for Villeneuve for some reason replacing him with Nichols,Davis or Longergan.

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterJoseph W

@ Ulrich I thought the accents were a bit strange,but then again I don't really know what Portuguese accents from the 16th century sound like.Also,based on the book,Garfield's character is kind of awkward and almost overzealous (at least at the beginning,when that scene occurs) so that doesn't really bother me.I think he's going to get nominated,if only for the sheer size and scale of the role.Despite what the marketing might make you think,Garfield's role is the leading one by a huge margin.The book is mostly told from Garfield's first-person narrative,and even when it switches to third-person in the last third its still limited to his POV.He is in practically every scene of the novel and it's hard to imagine how they could adapt the novel without that being the case in the film,so he's probably going to be on screen for the vast majority of its 3+ hour running time.Combine that with the fact that there are some insanely Oscar-baity style moments for Garfield in the last third of the novel,its hard to see the Academy snubbing him unless his performance is truly terrible (and given that its Scorsese,who typically brings out the best in actors,I would find that very hard to believe).

November 23,2016 | Unregistered Commenterchasgoose

chasgoose,I hope you're right - that Garfield's good,and that Driver's good - and that the picture is good.I'm a Scorsese fan (primarily of his fantastic run of pictures - Taxi Driver,New York,New York,Raging Bull,King Of Comedy,After Hours,Color Of Money.) But also of Goodfellas and Casino.
Even though I'm not completely sold,Age Of Innocence,Kundun and Bringing Out The Dead are very interesting pictures.

But since he hooked up with Leo,I've not liked any of his movies,with the exception of Wolf Of Wall Street - not perfect,but it had many audacious things going for it.

Silence has been his passion/dream project for years - and that's always dangerous -
getting to finally make your passion/dream project;see what happened with another one of his passion/dream projects,Gangs Of New York - disastrous result,because of many factors,not least Harvey Weinstein's meddling.

I hope no studio has disturbed Silence - on length issues
or otherwise.

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterUlrich

At this stage,and because the group is not the standard bunch,I am predicting an out-there win for auteru Barry Jenkins.This may change after the precursor month coming up,but I see no reason to change my prediction for now (no reason.....apart from the recent surge of approval for FENCES making me consider Denzel,as he may be the only "name"in the nomination list,but I will hold off making a change for now).

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterTravis C

At this stage,and because the group is not the standard bunch,I am predicting an out-there win for auteru Barry Jenkins.This may change after the precursor month coming up,but I see no reason to change my prediction for now (no reason.....apart from the recent surge of approval for FENCES making me consider Denzel,as he may be the only "name"in the nomination list,but I will hold off making a change for now).

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterTravis C

Can Lonergan and MBTS stand a chance?

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterCraver

Two black directors nominated in the same year that many are predicting at least one black nominee in each acting category?That would be exciting,but I remain skeptical.

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterTroy H.

@Ulrich I think the studio is being as hands off as they possibly can here.I mean it wasn't even certain that it was going to be released in time for awards season and there wasn't even a trailer until last night.Even studios who would cede artistic control probably wouldn't have been this patient with a director about how much time he's taken to fully exact his vision and would probably have put a lot more pressure on him to get it done.If they are this hands off about him hampering their marketing efforts and cutting it so close to the end of the year,I find it hard to believe they would be forcing him to compromise artistically.

November 23,2016 | Unregistered Commenterchasgoose

Washington in director seems like a waste.Give him a 3rd Oscar in Actor and call it history.Jenkins is an auteur similar to Steve McQueen this is an opportune time to just go there and give it to him.I want to see Verhoeven as a nominee.I also want them to stop bullshitting Bening and just give it to her as they did for Moore.Still Alice isn't an awards vehicle just a formality to get Moore the overdue competitive statuette in a non-consensus year.

November 23,2016 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

I hope you are all rehearsing the pronunciation of Larraín with those two beautiful r's.

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

Peggy Sue: I am!I think I've got it OK.

/3rtful: But if Denzel were to win Director,he'd become the first person ever to win Oscars for acting and directing.亚博主页That would be history too!

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

Predictions 11/23:

Lonergan - Scorsese - Chazelle - Larraîn -
Jenkins or Washington

November 23,2016 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

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