With Venice and Telluride in full swing in the final week of August leading into September two films have made quite a stir; Fox Searchlight‘s Birdman (at Venice) and The Weinstein Company‘s The Imitation Game (at Telluride). The reviews for Birdman and its stars Michael Keaton, Edward Norton and Emma Stone have been rapturous and are propelling them to near locked status for Oscar nominations. Director Alejandro González Iñárritu and cinematographer Emmanuel Lubeski (this year’s Oscar winner in this category for Gravity) are also assured.
The Weinstein Company‘s gamble to debut its main horse The Imitation Game looks to have paid off with multiple sold out screenings, sometimes having to turn away moviegoers by the hundreds. Despite starting off with some mixed reviews, the film is being likened to The King’s Speech, The Weinstein Company’s Oscar winning Best Picture from 2010.
Telluride also saw the debuts of The Daily Show‘s Jon Stewart’s directing debut Rosewater, from Open Road Films, which received respectable reviews and Fox Searchlight’s Wild, starring Best Actress hopeful Reese Witherspoon and Best Supporting Actress possibility Laura Dern. Both are looking for this film to be Oscar comeback vehicles; Witherspoon won Best Actress for Walk the Line in 2006 and Laura Dern was last nominated in Best Actress back in 1992 for Rambling Rose. Dern has a handful of supporting roles this year and her campaign push for her father Bruce Dern this and last year helped lead to his Best Actor nomination for Nebraska.
In our new charts and voting system, Boyhood heads the pack for Best Picture. Birdman and The Imitation Game themselves in a very healthy position of #2 and #3, respectively and Paramount Pictures‘ Selma, which is still in the post-production process is just a hair behind. The Gold Rush Gang has put quite a bit of faith in that film and Ava DuVernay and we think it’s going to pay off big time.
As you’ll notice, we’ve switched our voting process from a simple ‘pick your prediction’ to a ranked format. You’ll see a 1-10 for Best Picture or 1-5 for all other categories (save Makeup & Hairstyling, which is 1-3) from our Gold Rush members but in reverse order; so your highest ranking for Best Picture will be a 10, your lowest a 1. This gives us a total number at the end of higher point values.
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