Entries in Best Actress (350)
Today marks yet another onscreen reunion of besties & Dames Maggie and Judi: The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel opens in limited release (it goes wide next weekend). They shared a dressing room at the Old Vic in the 1950s and they've been tight ever since.
They're both Oscar Royalty of course, among the most beloved actresses to ever live, but Judi Dench's story is particularly interesting since it took her so long to cross over into full stardom. Long a valued commodity in the UK, America was slow to discover her. Perhaps it started with the international hit and Best Picture nominated A Room With a View (where she & Maggie played spinster friends - they both won BAFTAs for their roles, Maggie in Lead, but only Maggie went on to an Oscar nomination with a demotion to supporting). By the time Judi got her first true lead film role in Her Majesty Mrs Brown, Maggie was already a two-time Oscar winner, with five nominations under her belt.
So Judi's late life success is a unique story. Let's look at her career since her stateside breakthrough. How many of these 24 Judi Dench films have you seen?
Yay! It's the return of the long departed much requested Q&A column. Readers ask questions. I pick a handful or two to answer on Mondays. Hopefully it'll be rejuvenating. Every March I feel more like the banner up top. It's the collapsing period post-Oscar.
Let's get right to it and see how long I can keep up it this spring.
JOEY: Now that Julianne has her Oscar, which overdue actress would you most want to see walk away with her golden boy? Annette? Michelle? Someone else?
NATHANIEL: Obviously the 1980s were when AMPAS screwed up most in terms of key actresses who defined the time not being rewarded. This accounts for Close, Weaver, Turner, and Pfeiffer being unOscared. Assuming it's too late for them (and I do) the best I can hope for is the Academy to stop thinking only men deserve Honorary Oscars and take care of at least one of them. Also: is it too greedy to say that Kidman needs a second to remind everyone of her bonafide movie stardom?
ANDY: Looking back on your past Film Bitch Awards, do you regret giving a particular performance your win?
Thanks for reading & listening. You should sign up for the forthcoming weekly newsletter so you don't miss important events like a new Actress Psychic contest, the April Foolish Predictions and films to watch before big articles hit. It'll take you 5 seconds. Do it!
OSCAR RECAP COVERAGE
The Arrivals - Dakota Johnson, Rosamund Pike, The Streep
The Live Blog - Flu-ridden spontaneous responses
Best & Worst Moments - the Team speaks out
Birdman Post-Mortem - reflections on the Best Picture win
Readers Choice - who TFE's audience was rooting for. Sorry!
Nathaniel's Ballot - Nathaniel's 2014 favorites for comparison's sake
Title Cards - how beautiful was this year's art for each category?
Oscar Stages - how did this year's compare to past set designs?
Oscar Charts - updated. To be replaced with new predictive ones starting in April!
Best Oscar Tweets - from gaga gloves to great sex
Julianne Won an Oscar - a love letter
Julianne's Baby Boy Won an Oscar - who's next?
Best Supporting Actress Gowns - and a few presenters
Best Actress Gowns - and the Aussie goddesses
Lupita's Stolen Dress - we name suspects
Oscar Snacks - what did you serve at your party?
After Party Gowns - Andie Macdowell, Hailee Steinfeld, and more
New Trivia - several interesting things happened
Podcast - wrapping it all up. Final reflections.
The New Actress Hierarchy - Julianne Moore enters the royal palace
COMING IN MARCH: "We Can't Wait" 2015's Most Exciting Movies, Cinderella (2015), The return of "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" with The Sound of Music (Tomorrow! Are you ready?), The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Chappie, and looks back at Paris is Burning, Pretty Woman, and the films of Ida Lupino.
* last chance to post a photo of Channing Tatum in a singlet - had to take it.
This is your daily reminder that Julianne Moore is now an Oscar winner!
I thought it might be fun to revise the Oscar Acting Hierarchy which I did once very long ago, I believe in connection with the rapid rise of Kate Winslet through the ranks.
What follows is a List of 33 34 All Time Favorite Actresses of Oscar... restricted to women with 5 or more nominations. Only the acting statistics are accounted for so Emma Thompson, for example, is not ranked. If you included her screenplay win or had she been nominated for Saving Mr Banks last year than she would have been on the list. If you counted non-acting nominations, you'd also see Shirley Maclaine jump a rank as she was nominated for documentary once. Now that virtually every major star is a producer these types of extra nominations stats are going to get progressively murkier in Oscar lists of the future so we're opting not to include them.
How the ranks were determined. Number of nominations determines general placement. Once that's established wins are most important. In the event that someone has the same exact stats in nominations and wins, the tiebreaker factor in rank is that lead counts more than supporting. If the tie stubbornly remains the tie is broken by endurance (thus Vanessa Redgrave beats Kate Winslet though they have the exact same stats because her nominations are spread across 26 years instead of 13). Further mitigating factors: Three statues is so uncommon that it gives the actress a phantom extra nomination in terms of ranking (thus Ingrid Bergman trumps Geraldine Page). Honorary statues (Oscar or Jean Hersholt) give the actress a phantom extra boost with the same affect as an additional nomination and win (thus Liz Taylor jumps Jessica Lange)... unless she never won a competitive Oscar in which case it only counts as a phantom win or nomination (thus Kerr cannot pole vault up to do battle with Lange or Blanchett) which of those to be determined by the gatekeeper (yours truly). In the event that someone has multiple wins they may vault over the next immediate rivals if said rivals have never won a competitive Oscar and/or half or more of their nominations are in supporting (thus de Havilland trumps Glenn Close & Thelma Ritter despite having less nominations but can't displace Kate Winslet. This also accounts for two women with only 4 nominations entering the 5 nomination only "Most Beloved" ranks.)
OSCAR'S HOLY TRINITY
And Thirty More Royals
after the jump
We were just wrapping up Black History Month when I heard from longtime reader/commenter Philip Harville who wanted to discuss Monster's Ball (2001). I wasn't touching that one with a ten foot pole (!) but here's Philip with a guest column on this perpetual hot potato. -Editor
As we know, black films are hard to come by and good black films can be even harder to come by. This raises the question of what exactly a black film is. Is it simply a film that focuses on black characters? Or do we need to also have a black crew telling the story? The conversations unraveling from that thought are endless, but watching a certain film recently got me thinking. Monster’s Ball’s Leticia (Halle Berry) really suffers from a white male perspective behind the camera. The film gained a wide audience crowning Halle Berry as the first black woman to win the Best Actress Oscar, but did it create the conversation it should have? Good black films aren’t exactly churned out with the frequency of superhero movies (or Tyler Perry movies), so a flawed complicated film is a gift in its own right.
The film isn’t set in a definitive year, though it seems to be in a time where lynching and protesting were out of style, and casual racism has become the norm. We see the generational divide on the issue between the three males in the central family. [More...]
It's the final poll of the 87th Oscars and our last red carpet lineup for awhile *sniffle*. In addition to those things this is your daily reminder that Julianne Moore won an Oscar. Because it needs to be repeated often as healing balm for our beleaguered actressexuality.
Who was best dressed on Oscar night?
NATHANIEL: Please welcome back Anne Marie and Margaret to discuss these ladies (and five more, too).
ANNE MARIE: Best Actress! Obviously, we must start by repeating the best news, which is that JULIANNE MOORE IS NOW AN ACADEMY AWARD WINNER. I get tingles when I write it.
MARGARET: BLESSED BE.
NATHANIEL: Thank you. This will serve as our daily reminder (Hee! Are you sick of the daily reminders yet?) But I have to say that beyond Juli as the season ran on I came to love this lineup abundantly. It's the best possible lineup we could have gotten given the media's reticence to admit that there were intersting and worthwhile performances happening all year long in all kinds of films. I even grew to love Felicity Jones in a way (I think she gets an unfair wrap as a coattails nominee when a lot of that movie depends on her emotional fluidity and stubborness. But I hate this dress. It's so off color and pale as to make her fade away.
MARGARET: Felicity Jones' supportive-wife staple aside, how few 'types' there are! A really great array of characters, only improved by their great performances.
NATHANIEL: I even grew to love Felicity Jones in a way. Yes, it's a type. But I think she gets an unfair wrap as a coattails nominee when a lot of that movie depends on her emotional fluidity and romantic willfulness. But I hate this dress. It's burying her. It's so off color and pale as to make her fade away.
Reese & Rosamund & Aussie goddesses after the jump...