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The Oscar Week

In this weekly feature from Murtada we will follow the Oscar contenders and examine how their many interviews and appearances impact their chances. This week we check in with Emma Stone, Octavia Spencer, Ryan Reynolds, and Michelle Williams.

Emma Stone
It seems every week there is some event or interview with one of the stars of La La Land. That campaign is going on full throttle to maintain the film’s frontrunner status...

The SAG ensemble miss is being called out by some (more hysterical) pundits as major block on the film’s road to best picture. No matter, Stone and her director Damien Chazelle continued their press tour, this week in Europe. In London they met up with the legendary star of Gigi and An American in Paris, Leslie Caron. In Paris it was Agnes Varda, acclaimed director and widow of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg director Jacques Demy. Get that musical inspiration synergy! Meanwhile Stone’s cover story for Rolling Stone went viral because of what she said about the entrenched sexism in Hollywood.

 I hesitate to make it about being a woman, but there have been times when I’ve improvised, they’ve laughed at my joke and then given it to my male co-star. Given my joke away.

Octavia Spencer

Some thought it would be Janelle Monae because of her breakout year. Others penciled in Kevin Costner because of a pivotal scene in which he literally takes a hammer to segregation. But as we’ve  suspected all along, it is Octavia Spencer who emerged as the awards magnet from the stellar ensemble of Hidden Figures. We think it’s mainly due to a standout scene that is almost cathartic in our post election world. This week in an interview with Variety, Spencer, above with Taraji P Henson and Monae at their film's NY premiere, talks about other women she’d like to work with in the future, now that she’s been part of two great ensembles of mostly women in Figures and The Help (2011).

I just met Nicole Kidman and I’d like to do something with her. Sally Field. Angela Bassett. Something else with Jessica Chastain. Taraji are I are doing something together because we literally had so much fun working together. Meryl Streep, of course. Amy Adams. And I have something that I’m probably going to pitch to Amy Schumer. I love her dry wit, love it.

Ryan Reynolds

Could Deadpool and Ryan Reynolds actually be nominated for Oscars? With Golden Globes nominations for best comedy and best actor in comedy, the most unexpected Oscar campaign of the year keeps churning along. After missing out on the Visual Effects short list, Deadpool made into the Makeup and Hairstyling bake off. Reynolds meanwhile got his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame while continuing to screen his film including at the prestigious Contenders Series at NY’s Museum of Modern Art. The makeup nomination looks certainly attainable, but that’s a lot of campaigning for just that one category. Don’t be surprised if Reynolds triumphs over the other Ryan at the Golden Globes.

Michelle Williams

Another month, another magazine, another Oscar contender on the cover. This time it’s Michelle Williams on the cover of Elle. Special screenings for Manchester by the Sea continue despite the film being in general release. Williams attended once such screening this week in NY and was more candid than usual at the press line. She talked about her BFF Busy Philipps, who attended as her date, as “proof that the love of your life does not have to be a man”. We also loved an anecdote she shared about her director, Kenneth Lonergan, crying when directing her big scene with Casey Affleck. Hopefully the Academy's directors' branch is listening.

He had tears in his voice. Through tears, he would just say, ‘Keep going, keep going, keep going.’ And that’s the first time in my life that’s ever happened! I never heard a director cry from behind the monitor before! I sort of couldn’t believe it. I feel like he was inside there with us. I feel like he was crying with me. I feel like he was crying Randi’s tears.”


And finally, it looks like BAFTA is trying to give us a memorable moment on their January 10th Nominations announcement. Sophie Turner and Dominic Cooper will read the nominations. They must be hoping Cooper reads his girlfriend’s name. Or is it just us hoping? Anyway here’s said girlfriend, Ruth Negga, in a short video as part of NYTimes great performances issue.

What do you think of Deadpool's chances at the Golden Globes? Which of Spencer's hoped for collaborations would you like to see first?

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Reader Comments (14)

Taraji is the MVP (and Glen Powell, though adorable, is too young to be playing John Glenn that year).

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

"I hesitate to make it about being a woman, but there have been times when I’ve improvised, they’ve laughed at my joke and then given it to my male co-star. Given my joke away."

It seems rude and disrespectful to give someone a line that another person improvised.

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJackie

I have to laugh at that "A Star is Born" cover for Emma Stone - where were you when Easy A came out, Rolling Stone?!?

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDancin' Dan

Weird....I woke up this morning wondering out of nowhere..."Could Deadpool pull off some nominations?" I didn't care much for the movie, but it keeps popping up.

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCorey

I love the Varda/Stone pic. They had no idea of the existence of each other until that moment.

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

I'm not a super hero fan, but Deadpool, in my opinion, deserves a Screenplay nomination...

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDoug

Thinking in this cover, I need Huppert in the next one...

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDoug

Please, let's have a Jessica/Octavia reunion.

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

Oh Isabelle in the cover of ELLE is straight up meta iconic!
Look, if so many other A-List actresses love Amy Adams, then why couldn't you guys too?
Emma is so beautiful but that Rolling Stone cover is not attractive imo, why dress her like that?

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCraver

Emma Stone and Agnes Varda, I would pay good money to see those 2 do a film together.

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSteven

Now I want to see a whole movie of Ruth Negga directed by Gina Blythewood Prince!

I don't get how Emma Stone is being touted as this year's hot sexy It Girl when Ruth Negga is standing right there, looking insanely gorgeous. (Negga sings as well as acting beautifully and thoughtfully. She played the wonderful singer Shirley Bassey).

And I'd rather see Ryan Reynolds nominated than Casey Affleck. I can't stand that guy. Wild horses could not drag me to see a whole movie about him suffering, even if the whole rest of the world loves it.

December 23, 2016 | Unregistered Commenteradri

Juz found this Huppert's interview back in 2009, doing a GARBO pose!!! & can I say it's DIVINE!!

Sidenote: she wld've made a perfect serpentine Marquise de Merteuil!!!

December 24, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterClaran

Every year there seems to be one film like DEADPOOL that hit it big and people think "could it be nominated?!?" and they almost never do (maybe Melissa McCarthy in Bridesmaids is as close as it's come - but, The Hangover and such never break through and I doubt Deadpool will).

December 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn Dunks

I am on board for all the "Deadpool" nominations they can get (that they actually deserve). Would a Screenplay nomination be Original or Adapted?

December 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCarl

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