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Wednesday
Jan262011

What If There Were Five...?

The thought occurred to me early this morning when perusing the Oscar lists that we may have perhaps been wrong about which five films were in leading position. Last year for example the top five were tremendously clear; had there been only five nominees as had been the way of it for five decades plus, you would have been left with Basterds, Locker, Precious, Avatar and Up in the Air.

which movie came in 5th? which was 6th?

But this year, do we know? It's an indulgent question but what is Oscar-fanaticism but indulgent conversations about things one can never know the final truth of. Like who came in 6th? who was snubbed on purpose? who wasn't really snubbed but justmissed?

COMMENT TOPIC: Which five do you think it was? I think we can safely assume that The Fighter, The Social Network, True Grit and The King's Speech would have been there given their big nomination tallies. But then... 

Black Swan
could have held the 'lone director' spot since its nomination tally was smaller than expected. Inception could have been there without Nolan like another summer director-driven genre blockbuster Jaws without its fabled auteur. Could #5 have been Toy Story 3 or even The Kids Are All Right? Your theories please!


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Reader Comments (61)

I was thinking the same thing this morning too and came up with the same theory as you.
Black Swan gets the lone director spot. And Inception Best Picture without director along with Network, King, Grit and Fighter.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJoseph

I think the fifth spot belonged to The Kids Are All Right.
Inception not only missed Best Director but also Best Editing. Leaving Best Picture and Best Screenplay aside, all its other nominations are in "step"-categories. And Best screenplay practically has 10 nominations as well divided in adapted and original. So there is room for lesser liked pictures.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLara

I think the lack of screenplay shows clearly that Aronofsky was the Lone Directe; Best Picture nominees often miss Director, but HARDLY ever screenplay.

Inception was the 5th slot - tech nods show mass support, also screenplay recognition.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSam C.

Black Swan, Inception, The Fighter, The Social Network, and The King's Speech.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJonathon

Lara -- i do wonder if it was THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT though INCEPTION also seems likely. But i don't know if anyone remembers this. round about October eople did think The Kids... was one of the top five. But then the early precursors seemed hesitant.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNathaniel R

I think Black Swan gets the lone director's spot, with Inception still getting in for picture. It feels like the kind of blockbuster they'd actually embrace, especially since no one wears a cape! Then again, if the editing nod has become the true sign of a movie's strenght, 127 Hours may have been the one.
If they ever go back to 5 nominees (and I think they will soon), I don't think we'll see any other animated films get nominated, not with the seperate category. In retrospect, I think when The Lion King couldn't make with it's damn near perfect mix of box office and acclaim, no other animated films would conceiveable stand a chance.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVal

Val, hmmmm. I kind of believe that WALL•E was in 6th place in 2008, not The Dark Knight. I bet it came close.

January 26, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I think...

The Fighter
The King's Speech
The Social Network
True Grit

and...

The Kids Are All Right. It had support from the writers and the actors, the latter being the Academy's biggest branch of voters. Inception had most of its support coming from the writers.

As for Director, it'd be the same as Picture, but with Darren Aronofsky instead of Lisa Cholodenko (i.e. the lineup we actually have)

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJulian Stark

IMO, Black Swan is #5, Winter's Bone #6
They obviously were not that fond of Inception. Maybe it was not even #7.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKokolo

Jonathon: Are you out of it? A movie that gets 8 nominations aside from Best Director (True Grit) is getting in best Picture. Nat's right. I think Black Swan would, most likely, be "the lone director." (The lone director is always going to be in the year's top 10. From the 10 ceremonies before picture went to 10, that would mean: Being John Malkovich, Billy Elliot, Mulholland Drive, Black Hawk Down, Talk to Her, City of God, Vera Drake, United 93 and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly were probably ALL in the Academy's top 10.) It's probably not Toy Story 3 (we don't have confirmation that there's enough support for an animated to EVER be top 5) and, although it has 4 big noms, Kids doesn't have editing. I'm thinking, most likely, Inception, The Fighter, Black Swan and Kids were fighting down to the wire for 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th positions. Winter's Bone is, most likely, 9th place and Toy Story 3 is the dead rear.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

volvagia -- there have been films with 8 noms that did not make best picture
DREAMGIRLS, THEY SHOOT HORSES, THE DARK KNIGHT.
it happens.

January 26, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I think Black Swan is 5th. The acting branch probably loves it and the Academy is just not that into Nolan... YET.

Can we please go back to 5 best picture nominees?

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

"Best Picture nominees HARDLY ever miss Screenplay."

I don't know about that: Avatar, Ray, Master and Commander, The Two Towers, and Moulin Rouge! were all BP nominees passed over for Screenplay—that's five movies in the last ten years. Go back another ten years and you'll find another six BP nominees in the same situation. So such a thing does in fact happen about every other year.

Remember what Nathaniel said about Inception in his predictions: that the summertime love for it was growing cold. Cape or no cape, I think Inception fell out of the top five.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJ.P.

If Editing was a crucial nom to have to be part of the 5, we wouldn't be talking about Up in the Air from last year, which missed out on that one.

Definitely agree on King, Network, Grit and Fighter. For the fifth spot, I'm leaning towards The Kids Are All Right. Yeah, it "only" got 4 noms compared to some of the other films in the 10, but counting noms is silly. The Dark Knight had 8 noms to The Reader's 5, and it still didn't get nominated for Best Picture. Kids would take a Juno/Sideways/Little Miss Sunshine slot.

As others have said, Black Swan is definitely a director-only film in a 5-nom year, as its lack of screenplay nom indicates. Toy Story 3 is out due to it being animated, of course, and will likely have trouble getting support from actors. Inception, well, no. Techs love it, but it's still a big actionfilled summer blockbuster, and they tend to be stingy nominating those in 5-nom years. Winter's Bone could happen (it got the same noms as Kids), but it depends on if we're doing preferential ballot or not. Preferential benefits few-but-passionate supporters in the nomination phase. Otherwise, I'd say 127 Hours would be its biggest competition.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEsh Kebab

I'm not convinced that there's some nomination-to-Best Picture corollary in the hypothetical 5-Wide Field. I doubt, for example, District 9 would have been nominated for anything beyond Visual Effects last year if there weren't 10 Best Picture Slots. I think either An Education or Precious would have been nominated for picture, but not both as in 5-nominee years, as they would have been fighting for the same tiny low-budget darling slot.

So, I think, had the 10-Wide Field never been established, Best Picture nominees would have been The King's Speech (proper and quiet prestige film), The Social Network (break-out timely hit), Winter's Bone (indie darling garnering many number one votes), 127 Hours (good-enough follow-up to massively loved Academy Award winning film), and either True Grit or The Fighter (genres, western and boxing respectively, that the Academy has been drawn to in the past). Black Swan is a horror film and Inception is a fantasy blockbuster; they would have gotten nowhere near the Best Picture list if the votes couldn't be more spread out. Toy Story 3 would have languished in the Animated Film category and maybe gotten nominated for Original Song. The Kids Are Alright would have gotten double Best Actress nominations and maybe snuck in for Original Screenplay over a Best Picture nominee.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterOtherRobert

Inception would probably be the fifth best picture nominee but I wonder if the general good will towards Pixar means that they would break the top 5. Up would probably be snubbed last year, increasing the whole "the Academy never nominates animation" cry and positioning Toy Story as the one to break the animation taboo. Wall-E probably was on a better position on the top 10 at the Oscars than The Dark Knight.

I also wonder if The Kids Are Alright would get the "indie movie of the year" spot similar to the way Sideways, Little Miss Sunshine and Juno got their nominations. it would make sense that a eventual 5 best picture line up included something lighter like a comedy or an animation to compete with all those dramas, right?

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAdam S.

adam s - that is the way i'm leaning after these comments.

but i'm also starting to doubt my own understanding of preferential balloting because what i keep hearing described is different than my understanding of it. yikes. i was SO sure i understood this before but perhaps the meaning of it has changed along with the changes to best picture -- since nominations have always been preferentially balloting with numbered slots in my lifetimes (unless i've forgotten a major change.

January 26, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I said "fighting for those slots." Not, "They have secured those positions." I know it happens. I also grew much fonder of The Dark Knight after viewing #2. (1st viewing: B. 2nd viewing: A, especially after going back on a 2nd viewing of Batman Begins, which was: 1st viewing: B+. 2nd viewing: I was a bit crazy. B-.) Here's hoping The Dark Knight Rises punctures my top 100.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

I don't think we'll ever know. There are tons of plausible theories. The most common one seems to be Inception in 5th/Black Swan in 6th, but given the HUGE precursor support for Swan in the BFCA, globes, guilds, box office, etc. I'm not convinced it was outside the top 5. Remember, it led the BFCA noms and had every single guild. It was probably 5th behind those other solid 4, but I think I'd put my money on it being in there after all. The reason it missed screenplay is because, as many have correctly noted, it didn't DESERVE screenplay. Same with supporting actress. Even its most ardent fans are probably happy for Mike Leigh and Jackie Weaver, respectively. As for the sound and costume snubs, well that's just the usual genre bias, pro-explosion BS. Swan basically got the worst case scenario anyone would've imagined, but I think think it was better poised for the 5 than anything else.

That said, it was probably close and could've been any of them. But my feeling is that they just weren't that into Inception and would've given it its 7 tech noms and screenplay as a "token" nom for Nolan in the major categories (when the actors don't like you, it's hard to land in the top 5). Kids and Winter's Bone were splitting too much of the breakout indie/girl power vote for either to hit the top 5. 127 Hours maybe could've been it, but given that many were doubting it would even be in the 10, I doubt it had support for top 5. And Toy Story 3 is animated, so...

Undoubtedly a tight race for 5th, but I'd put my money on the Swan.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAdam Keller

With all this talk about animateds never being nominated in a five-wide BP field, it's like everyone's forgotten Beauty and the Beast.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJ.P.

I think it probably would have been...

The Fighter
Inception
The King' s Speech
The Social Network
True Grit

And Nolan still would be snubbed for Aronofsky... Does anyone think it will go back to 5 anytime soon? I sure hope it does. 10 is too many... it makes the nomination less special.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Martin

Given the nomination, I think King's Speech, Fighter, True Grit was the first three, and TSN was close 4th. Duh. I think the 5th spot belongs to Toy Story 3. It's hard to believe that Inception makes the top 5 and at the same time Nolan gets snubbed, since it was director-driven film. And yes, The Kids Are All Right might be this year's Juno, but the problem is there was also Winter's Bone. Both lower-budget-sundance-hit indie, both loved by actors, and so on. Sure The Kids Are All Right looks more friendly but directors also adored Debra Granik. BTW anyone noticed those two film got exact same nomination? Pic, actress, supporting actor, writing. And 127 Hours? I don't think so.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJin

What an interesting question....

I actually think Black Swan was comfortably in the Top Five alongside Network & Kings Speech (obviously) and True Grit and Fighter (probably), but maybe that's because I liked Swan so much....

But since we don't know vote tallies, I think Toy Story 3 and Inception could have conceivably snuck in....Kids Are All Right, 127 Hours and definitely Winter's Bone (too small) could not.....

PS-
I also hope that it goes back to Five Nominees! Seems like we are giving everyone a medal now....

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterA.D.

A.D. it's the special Olympics!

January 26, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

JP -- exactly. Beauty & The Beast made it with only really LITTLE MERMAID as warmup. I'm not entirely unconvinced that TOY STORY 3 wouldn't have been there with 15 years of warmup :)

but that said TOY STORY 3 is a sequel and there are biases against those. I'm just hoping HARRY POTTER 7.2 is not nominated next year because that will kill me. BLARGH. i hate that series now (whereas i once hated it then liked it then tolerated it. now i'm at full on hate. SO SICK OF IT. it's 10 years of hogging the cinema. Enough!

January 26, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Nat, how about 3 more Pirates of the Caribbeans?

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJin

I'm not ENTIRELY unconvinced of Toy Story 3 either, but what would make it any different from WALL•E or Up or Ratatouille or The Incredibles or any of the other brilliant Pixar films? I really think if it had ever been allowed to happen, WALL•E would've been the one. Yet they passed it up for Frost/Nixon and The Reader.

Toy Story 3 was maaaaybe 7th behind Black Swan and Inception. That's the highest I'm willing to go...

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAdam Keller

Considering the editing nod, I think it would have still gone to Black Swan. Admittedly, I was surprised by how much the technical branches didn't like it, but I think it would have squeezed its way in there.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKevin

I think it would have been neck and neck between Black Swan and 127 Hours. Clearly the Academy loved 127 Hours more than most of us predicted. It had more nominations than Swan, but I think much of that has to do with the categories it was eligible for. For instance, 127 Hours got a screenplay nom and Black Swan didn't, the original screenplay field was stronger this year than adapted. Hours also got song which Black Swan couldn't get (and let's be honest score has very little effect on a movie's BP chances). So given all that data, and the fact that Swan had a director and cinematography nom and 127 Hours didn't, I'll go with Swan. BUT 127 Hours was a very close 6th I think.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPhil

The Fighter
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
The Social Network
True Grit

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterThe Z

I'll go with Black Swan. Director and Editing are the first places to look, and I don't think 127 Hours was a likely candidate. Still, it pulled six nominations. It's a definite possibility, and they liked it more than I expected.

The Kids Are All Right didn't get Moore or Cholodenko. Bening was a given, and Ruffalo was likely, though certainly not a given. There was a lot of buzz early in the year for this film, but it has died down. It has been underperforming in a number of areas.

They really liked Winter's Bone, which they showed by letting John Hawkes get in over Garfield. It also showed up in writing and BP, and Granik was probably 7th in Director behind Nolan (maybe even 6th?). It also strikes me as a movie they would embrace.

Inception missed out on Director, and for those pointing to the high number of tech nods, I'd remind that even if they hated the film, it was going to get plenty of recognition in those areas. The lack of an Editing nod means not only did they not love it, they didn't especially love the way it was put together. (I realize the branches are separate, but it was the editing branch that didn't like it. If they weren't thrilled, I can't imagine the rest of the Academy was either.) I am extremely biased because I love the film, but I honestly don't think they understood it. The BP nod was a reward for being a high-minded blockbuster, and they may have found it "interesting," but I can't imagine it would make the five.

Toy Story 3 was certainly strong, but strong enough to get out of Best Animated Film? I honestly think since the invention of that category, we would have to see a film be in the top one or two slots to get in. Otherwise, it would just be seen as wasting a slot. I don't think TS3 was vying for the prize, so I imagine it would miss.

So what about Black Swan? Yes, it's highly sexual and yes, it's a weird film. It's not too weird to be a box office hit, though. The nomination in Director is a good indicator, though they often have lone nods there. We have a Best Actress frontrunner (at this point), and it's very common for us to see one BP nod with a female lead. I also don't think any of the films I mentioned had enough momentum to take it down.

So, my guesses with five:
1-4: The Fighter, The King's Speech, The Social Network, True Grit (in no order)
5. Black Swan
-------------------
6. 127 Hours, which I would have had at #10 before nominations
7. Winter's Bone
8. Inception
9. The Kids Are All Right, though that campaign may have changed if there were only five slots
10. Toy Story 3 because they could reward it in Animated

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered Commentereurocheese

Good points all. Can we talk about TRUE GRIT? For me, its nominations tally is an especially disheartening bit of Academy politics. Not that anyone asked, but I don't think Bridges deserves to be here, I don't think the Coens deserve to be here, I don't think Deakins deserves to be here (okay, maybe he does, but GRIT is far from his best), and I don't think it deserves to be in the Best Picture 10. Now the consensus is it would've landed in the top 5. I'm glad for the film's box office success, but I find it a generally unimpressive effort from all concerned, save Steinfeld, who wows in it. Who else is exhausted with the Academy latching on to folks like the Coens and hurling gold at whatever they create?

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKurtis O

Kurtis -- they do this with actors too. That Oscar groove happens and you can phone it in. Later when they're tired of you you can do your best wokr and they don't notice!

January 26, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I think the year they go back to five nominees, it will be a year as good as 2007, and people will be bitching about the lack of recognition for their favorites movies, again! ¬¬

about "Who could be the #5?" TKS, TSN, TF, TG (too many T's :) are in, and looks like a very serious line-up, I don't believe 127 Hours could be, because that would be a tragic serious line-up; no Inception and no Toy Story because I think they are in the same position of The Dark Knight and Wall-E... The Kids are Alright is a indy-comedy, and they'd go there when the director was also nominated (Juno, Sideways, Lost in Translation) or the movie was a smash hit (Little Miss Sunshine)... so Black Swan is my bet for the five spot, I know isn't a comedy, but you can't take it too seriously either! :)

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLuiserghio

My guess on The Five would include 1267 hours:

127 Hours
The Fighter
The King' s Speech
The Social Network
True Grit

The only important category 127 was left out of was directing -- which is, I know, the biggest predictor of a best picture nomination. But it covered every other category -- acting, writing, aural (sound/score), and visual (the all-important editing nom).

The film has been underestimated over the past couple months, but it has deep strength in the guilds, too (PGA, SAG, ACE, WGA) . The missing DGA nom is the only wrench, but that's not without precedent, too.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSan FranCinema

I think without the Nolan directing nomination and Black Swan being a horror movie and how much Toy Story 3 was beloved - I think it would have been Toy Story 3

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterbillybil

I think I may have underestimated The Kids Are All Right. I pulled a list I've never thought about before - the BP nods over the last decade that miss Director. Aside from the second film in the LOTR series (when everyone knew they'd be rewarding the third), it runs like a laugh-and-weep-athon: Atonement, Little Miss Sunshine, Finding Neverland, Seabiscuit, Moulin Rouge!, Chocolat. Now I adore some of these movies - in fact, MR! was my favorite from the last decade - but those non-Director slots go to touchy-feely films. The only films that really qualify for that are Toy Story 3 - an animated film, which tend to be a bit touchy-feely and pulled a grand total of one nod ever, pre-Animated category, before the 10 nominee system - and The Kids Are All Right. So, even if it didn't perform well eslewhere, I could Kids it at #6.

Here's my thing though - if Swan and Kids are competing for the last slot, and Kids takes it, doesn't that mean Bening has the edge in Actress? Unless the SAG tells us differently, I expect Portman to sweep. Actresses like Mirren and Roberts, who were way out in front for Actress wins, pulled their films into BP. Hell, Bullock pulled her film into the 10. I think Portman's turn is widely respected and it might be enough to pull the fifth slot.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered Commentereurocheese

*see Kids, lol

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered Commentereurocheese

Kurtis O, I SO agree with you about "True Grit"...except that I didn't even care that much for Steinfeld. I could never believe that she was really a feisty 14-year old...even though she's 14 in real life.

Oh...and considering that there have been so many comments about the phony CGI cold-weather breaths in one scene of "The Social Network," how come nobody has been complaining about the even more phony CGI snow in "True Grit?"

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBill_the_Bear

Hey, I don't think Toy Story 3 would have gotten in a traditional year (solely 5), but I highly doubt it was the rear or the tenth spot. That's highly unlikely because it had all of the precursors, whereas Winter's Bone and TKAAR did not.

As for this being the special olympics, 529 movies came out last year, and we are talking about the higher end, which seems out of sync with a competition for disabilities, lol.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDarkLayers

5. Black Swan
6. Inception
7. The Kids Are All Right
8. Toy Story 3
9. 127 Hours
10. Winter's Bone

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

Maybe I'm alone, but I don't think many of the films from the "lone director" spots of the past decade would've actually been guaranteed in a 10-field lineup. You could make a strong case that "Mulholland Drive," "Talk to Her," "United 93," and "Diving Bell and the Butterfly" were in spots #11 or further in their respective years...

2001: "The Royal Tenenbaums," "Black Hawk Down," "Shrek," "Memento," "Monster's Ball" ahead of "Mulholland Drive" for Best Pic.

2002: "Adaptation," "Greek Wedding" (shudder), "Road to Perdition," "About Schmidt," "Far From Heaven," ahead of "Talk to Her."

2006: "Dreamgirls," "Children of Men," "Little Children," "Blood Diamond" (shudder), "Pan's Labyrinth" ahead of "United 93."

2007: "Into the Wild," "Ratatouille," "American Gangster," "Charlie Wilson's War," "Sweeney Todd" ahead of "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" for Best Pic.

Maybe the psychology of knowing it was a 5-wide Best Picture field affected that (the directors might be OK nominating someone who would get left off a 5-wide field... but not 10-wide. They'd be seen as too out-of-touch). I doubt we'll see a lone director again with a 10-wide field.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnthonyDC

anthony -- i doubt it too but it seems like a loss. I mean that was always so much fun and some of the most autuer triumphant moments.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNathaniel R

Yeah, it's too bad. I guess Ben Affleck would've been the most likely Best Director nominee this year w/o a Best Pic nom? Ha.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnthonyDC

Yeah. To them, "directorial" means this: Be hard. Hard like John Huston. The director's are probably the branch least likely to award "fun at the multiplex" like Moulin Rouge. A director like Aronofsky was always going to get a nom...eventually. A director like Baz Luhrmann? Will probably never get one. EVER.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

The Fighter
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
The Social Network
True Grit

I dunno. I really feel like 'The Kids Are All Right' would have held on. It's easier to swallow than 'Black Swan', 'Winter's Bone' and '127 Hours, it's less of a genre piece than 'Inception', and of course, it's less animated than 'Toy Story 3'.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJames C.

No way was Greek Wedding was in the ten over Talk to Her. A movie with a director nom and original screenplay win passed over for a single nom movie? No way. Just no way. 01: Royal Tenenbaums? I almost feel Amelie would have been closer to a nom as opposed to Tenenbaums. (Amelie only grossed just over half of Tenenbaums domestic total (33 million for Amelie to 52 million for The 'Baums), but the much higher degree of worldwide success (174 million to The 'Baums 71 million) and lower budget (10 million to The 'Baums 28 million) would have possibly played very well to many of those in Hollywood. And then there's Amelie's noms other than Original screenplay to factor as well.) Also: Monster's Ball would maybe be a bit controversial for producers who are probably the most likely to be effected by such things. I'd actually see the producer's go for something weird and non-controversial than a normal controversial movie if they felt they could choose. Then there's Shrek. Two noms, and I'd see Ghost World as certainly being above it in it's other category. In that case, I'd see Mulholland Drive, Amelie and one of these: Ghost World, Tenenbaums or A.I. (it's a system tilted toward position #1s and 2s. Those are the other 5 movies that could conceivably be pulling position #1s and 2s) as nominees in 2001's ten wide field as opposed to Monster's Ball, Tenenbaums and Shrek as definitive choices. 2006: Dreamgirls? Cut out song, costume design and art direction (noms that don't affect picture viability at all) and that's 5 of it's noms gone. What's left: Sound mixing and a coupla support noms. Then factor in that United 93 is almost a documentary with NO PERFORMANCE BEATS that got editing and director and you have to concede it's inness. (Actor's were not going to cite performances contained therein, even if they loved the movie.) Then we get to 2007: American Gangster is the weakest link in your theory. A movie that got only one nom important to pic viability (Supporting Actress) gets in over one that got THREE (Director, Adapted Screenplay and Editing with Cinematog as a cherry on top securing it.)

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

#1-5: The Social Network, Black Swan, The King's Speech, True Grit, Inception for me.

I didn't rate The Fighter as much as most. I doubt The Kids are All Right and Winter's Bone would have made it, but they are amongst my favorites of the year.

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew Buckle

The Fighter
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
The Social Network
True Grit

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRyan

Plus: In 2001 I'm almost certain that Tautou was their 6th place Actress. Zellweger was 5th (and only got in because she's not in a movie you need subtitles to watch.) 1st: Berry. 2nd: Kidman. 3rd: Dench. 4th: Spacek. Who's left? Thora Birch? Scarlet Johannson? (A co-lead who'd be a good nominee and is one of mine, actually, but she was too young for the Academy) Naomi Watts? (who was in too weird a movie for them.) My field would be Kidman, Johannson, Watts, Tautou, Spacek. (Two turns that, in their own way, betray wild charisma (Tautou and Kidman), one disaffected, youth stuffed turn (Johansson), one turn rattled through the blender of a mind-bleep (Watts) and a light dynamic portrayal of an aging wife by one of the old pros (Spacek).

January 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia
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