Oscar History

The Film Experience™ was created by Nathaniel R. Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. All material herein is written and copyrighted by Nathaniel or a member of our team as noted.

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Entries in I Tonya (20)


Smackdown '17: Allison, Laurie, Lesley, Mary and Octavia

Presenting Oscar's Chosen Supporting Actresses of the Films of 2017


Two mothers with combative relationships with their daughters (Janney and Metcalf). One sister/business partner (Manville). One mother struggling with oppressive farm life (Blige). And one cleaning lady (Spencer) whose coworker/friend is mute and in love with a fish crea... listen, it's a long story!

But here's a beautiful thing that's too little remarked on this season: they're all actually supporting characters. No leads masquerading as support for once! 


From top left: Andrew Carden, Chris Feil, Candice Frederick, Erica Mann, Kevin O'Keeffe, and Nathaniel R

Here to talk about these five nominated turns, are in alpha order: Andrew Carden (Awards Connection / Gold Derby) Chris Feil (The Film Experience), Candice Frederick (Reel Talker), Erica Mann (NYC Film Chick), Kevin P O'Keeffe (Into) and your host Nathaniel R (The Film Experience). And now it's time for the main event... 


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Blueprints: "I, Tonya"

Jorge continuing to look at the screenplays of this year's Oscar crop... 

All through this year’s awards campaign, the team behind I, Tonya has repeatedly stated that the movie came to be because of screenwriter Steven Roger’s interviews with Tonya Harding and Jeff Gillooly, in which he realized that they both had widely different recollections of their relationship.

The movie that came out of those interviews decided to play with perspective, memory, and point of view to give an unreliable retelling of this story, and playing with biopic tropes. Let’s take a look at how Rogers used various formal devices in the script to convey that we all remember things differently...

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Doc Corner: 'The Price of Gold' Brings Clarity to 'I, Tonya'

By Glenn Dunks

The defining trait of I, Tonya that has separated it from a glut of biopics is that darkly comedic tone achieved significantly through fake direct-to-camera interviews by an assortment of ghoulish villains and anti-heroes. One could argue that with its cast of monstrous characters and flamboyant yet true-to-life costumes and wig-work, the film’s mock documentary device was entirely unnecessary at achieving its desired laughs.

Yet while I saw the value of its method as a sort of short-hand directorial device used to wrangle the story’s many real life contradictions and he-said-she-said-he-said-she-said-he-said narrative, having watched Nanette Burstein’s sublime The Price of Gold, it comes off as actually just lazy...

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FYC: Allison Janney in "I,Tonya"

by Seán McGovern

First things first: Lady Bird hasn't been released over here in the UK yet.
Secondly: Are you really going to begrudge Allison Janney an Oscar?
Then this FYC, by all accounts, is an unbiased endorsement of Allison Janney for Best Supporting Actress.

Allison Janney, as Tonya Harding's mother, in any other year, would have Film Twitter and Gay Twitter right behind her, and yet we hesitate. Janney is razor-sharp as LaVona Golden, whose love is more brutal than merely just tough. But as we have determined, this year there's a problem, and it's the problem of parallels..

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Olympics at the Oscar and "I, Tonya"

by Nathaniel R

Margot Robbie recently shared this pic from "exactly a year ago" when she was training for I TONYA

Is Margot Robbie the first actress to ever be nominated playing an Olympic athlete? I legit don't know the answer but I can't think of any others. The only previous Oscar nominated performances that we could think of were men: Will Smith as Muhammad Ali (though the focus there wasn't on the Olympics) and Mark Ruffalo as David Schultz (thanks commenters for this one!)

If you think back over movies that revolved around the Olympics in some way they aren't usually acting showcases (Chariots of Fire) or aren't focused on the Olympians themselves (Munich) or they're films that were either aimed at wide audience crowd pleasing or just didn't connect with awards voters (The Cutting Edge, Personal Best, Running Brave, Prefontaine, Eddie the Eagle, Cool Runnings) or they're documentaries which by their nature can't score acting honors.

There have been Olympians with movie careers but I can't think of any actors except Margot and Will Smith (who coincidentally co-starred in Focus in 2015) who have been nominated for playing an Olympian. Can you? Am I forgetting something totally obvious?


Box Office: The Post Widens, Proud Mary Aims, Paddington Returns

by Nathaniel R

Weekend Box Office (Jan 12th-14th)
800+ screens
excluding prev. wide
1. Jumanji $27 on 3849 screens (cum. $283.1)
1.🔺 I Tonya $3.3 on 517 screens (cum. $10)  REVIEW 
2. 🔺  The Post $18.6 on 2819 screens (cum. $23) REVIEW | OSCAR KICK-OFF 2.🔺 Phantom Thread $1.1 on 62 screens (cum. $2.2) HARRIET'S CAMEO
3. 🔺  The Commuter $13.4 on 2892 screens
3. 🔺  Call Me By... $715k on 174 screens (cum. $7.2) REVIEWISHSCREENPLAY | SEX
4. Insidious: The Last Key $12.1 on 3150 screens (cum. $48.3) 
4. Hostiles $276k on 42 screens (cum. $821k)
5. The Greatest Showman $11.8 on 2938 screens (cum. $94.5) REVIEW | ZAC
5.🔺 Condorita: La Pelicula $236k on 153 screens 


Support for Steven Spielberg's inspirational newspaper drama The Post within awards season has been a hysterical rollercoaster. Pundits were all "it's winning everything" as the rollercoaster climbed to its peak. On the descent they're screaming "lost everything!" (GLOBES, CRITICS CHOICE) or "wasn't even nominated!" (SAG, BAFTA). But now that the public is on the ride with the press perhaps we begin to climb again towards another adrenaline rush. Whether the descent is thrilling or terrifying this time will depend on your feelings about The Post  and how many Oscar nominations it gets. Streep and Hanks and Spielberg all remain bankable so the film will do fine in theaters but will Academy voters bite after the whiplash we saw during the precursors? [More charts and thoughts are after the jump...]

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Costume Design and Cinematography Guild Honors

by Nathaniel R

Sometimes all it takes is one killer lewk. You might not have thought of Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri as a "costume" movie but the Costumer Designer Guild gave it one of their contemporary nominations all the same. Must've been that already famous janitor jumpsuit with bandana on Frances McDormand. It's so very "Mildred". Either that or, you know, the Guilds are just voting on their favorite movies (as they are also prone to do) without thinking too much on their own fields within those movies. Who knows what lurks in the hearts of awards voters? No one truly as they're non monolithic.

More on their nominations (and the Cinematography guild also) with commentary after the jump...

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Soundtracking: "I, Tonya"

Chris's weekly look at movie music takes on Tonya Harding's arena rock...

I, Tonya has proven to be one of Oscar season’s most love it or hate it films - and naturally for yours truly, defending the film is a lot like defending its somewhat maligned soundtrack. And I fall on the slightly positive side for both. Like many of the film’s other broad strokes, it doesn’t nearly all work and some play for a quick grab at audience allegiance. Yet by my ear, its greatest musical sin is underserving Hot Chocolate’s “Every 1’s A Winner” (but we can leave that to Greta and Noah).

While the film becomes too contradictory to support its acceptance of the slippery boundaries of fact, personal truth, and conflicting perspectives, the way it uses music to examine this relationship is a bit more elegant...

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