Last Saturday, the Academy awarded their honorary Oscars at the second annual Governors Awards. Kevin Brownlow, Francis Ford Coppola and Eli Wallach were on hand to accept their awards, while the absent Jean-Luc Godard was also honored. Many video clips are available here.
The official Best Animated Feature short list has been released this week, and it contains 15 films. That means that there will be a maximum of three nominees in the category this year.
The official Best Documentary Feature short list has also been released, which contains the 15 finalists for nomination. Among the major documentaries that are on the list include films from past winners Alex Gibney (Client 9) and Davis Guggenheim (Waiting for “Superman”), past nominee Charles Ferguson (Inside Job) and the popular Exit Through the Gift Shop.
The 2010 David O. Selznick Achievement Award will be presented to Oscar-winning producer Scott Rudin. Rudin won his Oscar for Best Picture for No Country for Old Men, and produced two possible contenders this year: The Social Network and True Grit.
Two-time Best Actor winner Daniel Day Lewis has been announced this week as the star of the long-rumored Steven Spielberg-Tony Kushner Abraham Lincoln biography. Although two years away still, it should already be considered a strong contender for the 2012 Academy Awards.
Academy Award nominee Carey Mulligan will play the coveted role of Daisy Buchanan in the upcoming adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. The film is directed by Oscar nominee Baz Luhrmann and will co-star Oscar nominee Leonardo DiCaprio.
Joel McHale will host the 2011 Independent Spirit Awards on February 26.
The British film Made in Dagenham is creeping up as a possible dark-horse candidate, and has garnered an 85% on Rotten Tomatoes–but only a good (not great) 64 on Metacritic. All the reviews single out Sally Hawkins and Miranda Richardson as giving great performances, and they could be the film’s best bets.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part I is sure to be a strong contender in the technical categories, and the reviews are strong enough to make a formidable nominee in categories such as Best Score and Best Cinematography (where the franchise has scored nominations before).
Oscar Box Office
Megamind kept top spot at the box office last weekend, but had a painful 44% drop-off.
Another Year: Oscar favorite Mike Leigh is getting strong buzz from his new film, and it looks like it could be among his best films.
Cars 2: As I said a few weeks ago about this film, Pixar can’t be discounted in any category it seems.
Country Strong: Best Actress winner Gwenyth Paltrow is looking to pick up where last years Best Actor, Jeff Bridges, left off. The trailer does give the feeling that she gives a brauva performance, and we could see her reentering the race for the first time in a dozen years.
Cowboys & Aliens and Green Lantern: Two major summer films, and two leading candidates for technical awards next year. Both look like a lot of fun, but nothing to take too seriously.
Winnie the Pooh: Disney’s big 2011 release could be a major Best Animated Film contender next year.
The Oscar community is reeling over the tragic murder of Ronni Chasen (right), who was shot and killed this week. Chasen was an Oscar publicist who pushed many unlikely contenders into consideration, including 1989 Best Picture Driving Miss Daisy. She was 64.