Oscar History
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William Holden in Picnic

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Entries in running times (17)

Tuesday
Oct312017

124 days until Oscar... 

Just 124 days until Hollywood's High Holy Night, now. Time for a little silly trivia. Only two Best Picture winners have ever been exactly 124 minutes long. Curiously enough, those titles were back-to-back winners: Ordinary People (1980) and Chariots of Fire (1981) both of which beat critically-obsessed-over competition in Raging Bull (1980) and Reds (1981).

Admit it: You heard the Chariots of Fire theme song in your head and visualized Mary Tyler Moore's ice cold mom as soon as you read the titles. 

Where else did your mind's eye take you?

Saturday
Mar112017

358 Days Until Oscar. Moonlight was short, as Best Pictures go. 

Gone With the Wind is not remotely the longest movie to ever win an Oscar (O.J. Made in America just beat previously record holder in that regard, Russia's foreign film winner War & Peace, by pretending to be a "movie" when it was actually a TV miniseries). But Gone With the Wind remains, at 3 hrs & 58 minutes, the longest Best Picture winner. We published the list of running times of the Best Picture winners a few years back but since then the Academy has naturally added a few movies to this list so it was time to update.

The last three winners have all, thankfully, been comparatively succinct in their storytelling and all of them under the "average" in length for a Best Picture. Can we hope that running times will come back down again since they've been growing over the years? Moonlight, our latest champ, is the 15th shortest film to ever win Best Picture. You can pack a lot of greatness into 111 minutes as we hope future filmmakers will realize when they study Barry Jenkins amazing movie in film schools. 

Here are all 90 Best Picture winners from longest to shortest. The new entries in bold...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jan312017

Toni Erdmann and The Longest Foreign Nominees

By Dancin Dan

If you've heard one thing about Germany's Best Foreign Film Oscar nominee Toni Erdmann, other than how great it is (and you can add me to the chorus of voices showering it with praise), it's probably been that Maren Ade's shaggy-dog comedy is LONG. So, trivia hound that I am, I was naturally curious to see just how long it was in the grand scheme of Oscar.

Toni Erdmann has either the 16th or 17th longest running time of all the films nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. That confusion comes from the weirdness of different versions of films and which ones the Academy actually saw when voting...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Oct192016

"Silence" is Shorter, Still Possibly Golden

a new image from the film - our first look at Adam Driver

In very good news for butts of all shapes and sizes, news came this morning that Martin Scorsese's Silence is no longer going to be his longest feature film ever. That dubious honor will continue to be held by the excruciatingly long winded duo of Casino and Wolf of Wall Street. It seems that Marty and his trusted editor Thelma Schoonmaker have whittled away some 22 minutes from the earlier reported running time of 3 hours and 1 minute (or thereabouts)...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Oct032016

Still Blissing Out Over "La La Land"

Over the weekend I wrote up an Oscar preview for Towleroad - which you can consider a companion to our current Best Picture Chart and updated Oscar predictions. Here's what I wrote about La La Land, which I realize I didn't capsule review for you at TIFF: 

This musical from the young writer/director Damien Chazelle (Whiplash) won the coveted "Audience Award" at Toronto. That prize nearly always aligns with a Best Picture nomination in January. But the nomination will be the least of it - it has "winner" written all over it. La La Land is a total bliss-out, a colorful two hour romance with song and dance numbers about an aspiring actress and her jazz musician boyfriend. This is the third movie to co-star Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling and their onscreen chemistry is even better this go around and it was tremendous to begin with in Crazy Stupid Love five years back.

Here's a shocking statistic for trivia buffs: If La La Land is nominated for Best Picture it will be the first original live-action musical to do so since All That Jazz (1979). The musical nominees inbetween them were either animated  (Beauty & The Beast), adaptations of pre-existing shows (Chicago) or used pre-existing music for their songs (Moulin Rouge!). If La La Land wins it will be the first original movie musical to win the Oscar since Gigi (1958).

In addition to these general notes here are a few slighter more specific ones...

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