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Entries in Oscars (70s) (188)

Saturday
Oct222011

"I think you know all you need know about me."

I didn't want publicity. I didn't want to go into any of this then or now.

Is that all?"

Tuesday
Oct042011

'Training Day' Flashback & Double Oscar Wins

Ten years ago tomorrow, the bad cop / good cop drama Training Day debuted in theaters. It was a relatively inauspicious debut (for our purposes) in that, though the film was an instant hit, Oscar fanatics weren't really breathlessly awaiting its debut like it was a 'prestige picture' per se. The film surprised and wound up with two nominations for its leading actors, one in lead (Denzel Washington) and one in supporting (Ethan Hawke) because that's how Oscar do.

All it took was a couple of awesome soundbites and a sense that Denzel Washington was peaking as a movie star with that loss for Malcolm X still a regularly discussed Academy embarrassment and *BOOM* Julia Roberts was all

I love my life!"

.... and it was Oscar Number Two for Denzel!

Were you watching? 

King Kong ain't got shit on him.

Oscar #2 let Denzel into the slim ranks of actors with two competitive gold men. Here's the complete list in the order it occurred (because I like to make things difficult for myself).

  1. Luise Rainer (The Great Ziegfeld and The Good Earth 1936-1937) 
  2. Bette Davis (Dangerous and Jezebel 1935-1938)
  3. Walter Brennan (Come and Get It and Kentucky 1936-1938) *
  4. Spencer Tracy (Captains Courageous and Boys Town 1937-1938)
  5. Fredric March (Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and The Best Years of Our Lives 1931/32-1946)
  6. Olivia deHavilland (To Each His Own and The Heiress 1946-1949)
  7. Vivien Leigh (Gone With the Wind and Streetcar Named Desire 1939-1951)
  8. Gary Cooper (Sergeant York and High Noon 1941-1952)
  9. Anthony Quinn (Viva Zapata! and Lust for Life 1952-1956)
  10. Ingrid Bergman (Gaslight and Anastasia 1944-1956) *
  11. Peter Ustinov (Spartacus and Topkapi 1960-1964)
  12. Shelley Winters (Diary of Anne Frank and A Patch of Blue 1959-1965)
  13. Elizabeth Taylor (BUtterfield 8 and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf 1960-1966) 
  14. Katharine Hepburn (Morning Glory and Guess Who's Coming To Dinner? 1932/33-1967) *
  15. Helen Hayes (The Sin of Madelon Claudet and  Airport 1931/32 -1970)
  16. Marlon Brando (On the Waterfront and The Godfather 1954-1972)
  17. Glenda Jackson (Women in Love and  A Touch of Class 1970-1973)
  18. Jack Lemmon (Mister Roberts and Save the Tiger 1955-1973)
  19. Jason Robards (All the President's Men and Julia 1976-1977)
  20. Jane Fonda (Klute and Coming Home 1971-1978)
  21. Maggie Smith (The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and California Suite 1969-1978)
  22. Melvyn Douglas (Hud and Being There 1963-1979)
  23. Robert DeNiro (The Godfather Part II and Raging Bull 1974-1980)
  24. Meryl Streep (Kramer vs. Kramer and Sophie's Choice 1979-1982)
  25. Jack Nicholson (One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest and Terms of Endearment 1975-1983) *
  26. Sally Field (Norma Rae and Places in the Heart 1979-1984)
  27. Dustin Hoffman (Kramer vs. Kramer and Rainman 1979-1988)
  28. Jodie Foster (The Accused and Silence of the Lambs 1988-1991)
  29. Gene Hackman (The French Connection and Unforgiven 1971-1992)
  30. Dianne Wiest (Hannah and Her Sisters and Bullets Over Broadway 1986-1994)
  31. Jessica Lange (Tootsie and Blue Sky 1982-1994)
  32. Tom Hanks (Philadelphia and Forrest Gump 1993-1994)
  33. Michael Caine (Hannah and Her Sisters and Cider House Rules 1986-1999)
  34. Kevin Spacey (Usual Suspects and American Beauty 1995-1999)
  35. Denzel Washington (Glory and Training Day 1989-2001)
  36. Hilary Swank (Boys Don't Cry and Million Dollar Baby 1999-2004)
  37. Daniel Day-Lewis (My Left Foot and There Will Be Blood 1989-2007)
  38. Sean Penn (Mystic River and Milk 2003-2008)

 

* They won again after this for a total of 3 Oscars (except Hepburn the all time leader with 4 competitive acting wins)

The thing I find most interesting about seeing them all together like this is that it instantly reveals that if someone is going to win a second Oscar it usually happens quickly after the first... 3 to 6 years being common. (which immediately makes you wonder about people by the name of Helen Mirren, Marion Cotillard, Javier Bardem and Kate Winslet). The list also shows us that the late 1930s were just brutal for actresses whose names weren't Bette or Luise, that the 1970s were the most friendly towards previous winners and that 1938 and 1994 are strange anomalies, years in which three of the four Oscar winners had already won gold. It's only so long before we have a year with all four since there's a first time for everything.

Third time acting wins have only happened in 1940, 1968, 1974 & 1997

Only four people have ever won more than two acting Oscars and the last to join the club was Jack Nicholson in 1997 for As Good As It Gets. The universe assumes that Meryl Streep will be the fifth, but will she? Quite a few two-timers are still working.

Answer Me These Questions Three

  1. Which three double winners did you find most deserving of both?
  2. Which three would you immediately remove if you had a time machine?
  3. Who do you think is joining the two-timer ranks next? 

 

Tuesday
Sep132011

Top 100 "Characters" From 50 Years of Best Actressing

This past summer we polled you once or twice a month about the Best Actress characters that you think of the most often from the past 50 years of the cinema taking us all the way from 1961 through to this past spring's Oscars for the films of 2010! With the new fall season of The Film Experience kicking off and the Oscar films arriving, I thought we'd take one last look back at that polling.

It was quite fun for little OCD actressexual me to peruse and "sort" and all of that in excel. If you're OCD like me and want to know how I compiled the chart, which is listed in alphabetical order below and pictured in slide show format in chronological order, there's more information after the list. I'd love to say that we'd do 100 articles to celebrate (one for each of your fav' fictionalized ladies) but that would be an insane thing to promise. But we'll use the chart for inspirational somethings! Give these characters a big round of applause for all their years of entertaining service.

By all means if you haven't seen any of the 98 films represented, make it a viewing priority. 

Your 100 Most Memorable Best Actress "Characters"
50 Years | 100 Greats (1961-2010)  

List presented visually (chronologically) and in text form (alphabetically) after the jump. Plus: Statistics!

Click to read more ...

Monday
Aug292011

"A Star is Born"... or, will be *after* the Star's baby is born.

Beyoncé announced her pregnancy at MTV's VMAs last night. I switched channels after Gaga's drag king opening number so the news got to me secondhand.

There be film fallout. The fourth feature film version of A Star is Born (2013? 2014?) is now delayed for at least nine months as Beyoncé gestates and welcomes her first child into the world. The musical, meant to be Clint Eastwood's post J Edgar project, had hoped to go before the cameras early in 2012 and with the speed that Eastwood tends to work we would have probably seen it as a Christmas 2012 release.

But now that Beyoncé is pregnant (and considering also that Leonardo DiCaprio has turned down the male lead role), this won't be happening just yet. The Beyoncé/Jay-Z babe will be born first.

Oscar-obsessives should keep a close eye on this one -- the film, not the babe. While the project seems ridiculous on the surface for both "another one?" superfluity and Eastwood + Beyoncé odd-coupledom, A Star is Born is a durable cultural object. It's always a major morphing showcase for the gifts of its leading lady. The first three incarnations resulted in 17 Oscar nominations and 3 Oscars all told including bids for Best Actress for both Janet Gaynor (1937) and Judy Garland (1954) and a Best Original Song Oscar for Barbra Streisand's "Evergreen" (1976).

Will we see Beyoncé as a Best Actress nominee in 2013 or 2014... or will she have to "settle" for a Best Song Oscar?

Thursday
Aug252011

Your Fav' Sixties & Seventies Ladies

During Summer 2011  -- winding down at last! -- we've been asking TFE readers to choose the most memorable Best Actress nominated film characters. Which film characters have you taken into your hearts and headspace most fully? Who is always popping into mind unbidden? Below are the latest voting results for August's polls covering the 1960s & 1970s (previous results: 1980s and 1991-2010). We used five year intervals for voting and asked readers to choose the 5 most memorable characters from each group of 25 Oscar nominees.

If you're looking for these polls to provide a "face" of an era it looks like Julie Andrews wins the early 60s -- she was thoroughly modern back then! -- and Faye Dunaway takes over from there for a long run at the top (1966-1980) [* indicates that it was an Oscar winning role.]

1961-1965


  1. HOLLY GOLIGHTLY (Audrey Hepburn) Breakfast at Tiffany's
  2. MARY POPPINS* (Julie Andrews) Mary Poppins
  3. [tie] MARIA VON TRAPP (Julie Andrews) The Sound of Music and BABY JANE HUDSON (Bette Davis) Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?
  4. ANNIE SULLIVAN* (Anne Bancroft) The Miracle Worker

Runners Up: Though the top five were never in question, DEANIE LOOMIS from Splendor in the Grass, ALMA BROWN* from Hud (who also tied) and DIANA SCOTT*, the "sunshine girl" from Darling each had deep pockets of swoony admirers.  The remaining two top ten'ers, further back in voting were MARY TYRONE from Long Day's Journey Into Night, and CESIRA* from Two Women.

Observations: The Julie Andrews characters flip-flopped for the first week of voting until Mary took flight and left Maria behind on the hilltop. Baby Jane tried everything to kick Maria off the mountain: writing letters to daddy, rat dinners, actual kicking; a very tight race that was for third place and in the end they tied. Aside from Audrey's win, there was little consensus.

Geraldine Page finds "pure hard gold" in boytoy Paul Newman in Sweet Bird of Youth

I was disappointed at the lack of substantial votes for Natalie Wood's preggers single gal in Love With the Proper Stranger and Geraldine Page's bitch goddess superstar in Sweet Bird of Youth (though the latter almost cracked the top ten) but voting was all over the place in this round. 

Weakest Showing: No actresses suffered the "no votes" problem in this half decade grouping, but ALMA from Summer and Smoke, JANE FOSSETT from The L Shaped Room and MARGARET HAMMOND from This Sporting Life barely found any favor.

1966-1970


  1. MRS ROBINSON (Anne Bancroft) The Graduate
  2. MARTHA* (Elizabeth Taylor) Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf
  3. BONNIE PARKER (Faye Dunaway) Bonnie & Clyde
  4. FANNY BRICE* (Barbra Streisand) Funny Girl
  5. [TIE] ELEANOR OF ACQUITAINE* (Katharine Hepburn) The Lion in Winter and MISS JEAN BRODIE* (Maggie Smith), The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

still in her prime.Runners Up: update. whoops. I misread the chart. Maggie Smith's Oscar winning haughty schoolmarm actually tied with Hepburn's Lion in Winter character in the last couple of days of voting. I had missed that! What a relief, Miss Jean Brodie, still being in her prime!] The remaining four players in the top ten are as follows: GLORIA BEATTY danced as fast as she could for 7th place for They Shoot Horses Don't They? Then with far fewer votes came, JENNIFER CAVALLERI from Love Story, SUSY HENDRIX from Wait Until Dark and CHRISTINA DRAYTON* from Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?

Observations: This was the closest the top spot has ever come to a tie with seductive Mrs. Robinson besting drunk Martha by just 2% of votes gathered. In other kindred spirit news, they're both fond of playing "get the guest".

This is also the closest your votes have ever aligned with the Academy's decisions as four of your top five actually winning the gold for their indelible creations and another top ten'er, too. The further back we go the more obvious it is which films are not readily available for home viewing and how much Oscar wins are worth for longevity. It's an easy way to draw people backwards to see old films. But about the availability of some films... I've said it many times but I'll have to keep saying it. Hollywood is a shameful place. It's an industry with gazillions of dollars in profits and far too few of those bucks get funnelled back into the art form to insure that films are preserved and/or available for the public. At the very least an Oscar nomination ought to mean that your film never disappears for good.

Weakest Showing: "Mary Wilson" from Happy Ending received 0% of the votes. The film is not available on DVD. Morgan!'s "Leonie Delt" and "Rosy Ryan" from Ryan's Daughter just barely escaped this fate.

1971-1975


  1. SALLY BOWLES* (Liza Minnelli) Cabaret
  2. NURSE RATCHED* (Louise Fletcher) One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
  3. EVELYN CROSS MULWRAY (Faye Dunaway) Chinatown
  4. CHRIS MACNEIL (Ellen Burstyn) The Exorcist
  5. ALICE HYATT* (Ellen Burstyn) Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore

Runners Up: the rest of the top ten in descending order were BREE DANIELS* Klute, MABEL LONGHETTI A Woman Under the Influence, and KATIE MOROSKY The Way We Were, CONSTANCE MILLER McCabe and Mrs Miller and ADELE The Story of Adele H.

Jane Fonda as "Bree" in KluteObservations: This five year period surprised me the most of all the polls in terms of how well various women fared. Ellen Burstyn is a national treasure but I wasn't expecting either of her roles to show up in the top five, let alone both of them! It seems to me that her past star would not shine as bright without that shocking resurrection that was Requiem for a Dream (2000). Let that be a lesson to all actresses. Don't give up when you've crossed the senior citizen mark. An acclaimed golden years performance can restore major luminosity to to your earlier shining successes. Speaking of which, Jane Fonda could use one final hurrah performance herself to remind people of what an irreplaceable actress she is. I was personally very disappointed to see her Klute performance outside the top five (It was a narrow miss but it shocked me. I'd rank it among the ten best actress performances of all time). But the #8 rank for Barbra's famous romantic heroine from The Way We Were was the biggest lower-than-expect shocker and at the very least it suggests that Carrie Bradshaw was definitely not voting on these polls. 

Weakest Showing: Marsha Mason's "Maggie Paul" from Cinderella Liberty received no votes with the little seen these days "Gitl" from Hester Street nearly meeting the same fate.

1976-1980


  1. ANNIE HALL* (Diane Keaton) Annie Hall
  2. CARRIE WHITE (Sissy Spacek) Carrie
  3. DIANA CHRISTENSEN* (Faye Dunaway) Network
  4. LORETTA LYNN* (Sissy Spacek) Coal Miner's Daughter
  5. NORMA RAE WEBSTER* (Sally Field)

Runners Up: the rest of the top ten in descending order was composed of bad mommy BETH JARRETT from Ordinary People, Goldie Hawn's PRIVATE BENJAMIN, Bette Midler's MARY ROSE FOSTER from The Rose, delusional beige EVE from Interiors and "Yo, ADRIAN" from Rocky just barely knocked Gena Rowland's GLORIA and Ingrid Bergman's CHARLOTTE ANDERGAST of the ring to nab spot #10.

Observations:  I was surprised to see Mary Tyler Moore's legendary Bad Mommy performance in Ordinary People outside the top five but she was just one or two votes shy of making it a three way tie with the two biographical performances ahead of her. 

Marsha... no one is on the line!Weakest Showing: Marsha Mason's "Jenny Maclaine" in Chapter Two received no votes. I thought about voting for this character myself but there were too many other strong options. I used to just love that movie though I have only the dimmest recall of it now so I couldn't say "most memorable!". Mason was a very hot Oscar commodity for a few short years but none of her characters have done well in the polls indicating that her films have either not aged well for one reason or another or people just haven't seen them or, most likely, some combination of both. Is it time for some enterprising young director to take her on as a project: Marsha Mason revival!

This is a lot to process, I know. Any surprises, disappointments or observations you want to share? Have you been inspired to add any of these pictures to your rental queues?

Wednesday
Aug032011

70s "Best Actress Character"

Here we go again. We've been voting on the best Best Actress characters of all time. (Results of the 80s, 90s and 00s if you missed any.) These polls are not meant to represent which actress you would have voted for had you been an Oscar member but which characters are the most indelible in the Academy's history. Which of these fictional or fictionalized ladies from the 1970s take up the most mental real estate for you?

You can choose FIVE characters from each poll. The second poll is further down the page.

Ready Set Go

1971-1975

 

 

But wait there's more!

1976-1980

 

 

Happy Voting!

 Please tell your 70s mad friends about the poll. What a decade in cinema that was...