The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences changed its rules this year for the animated feature category, opening up the nominations to the entire membership. Whereas that could have tilted the field away from the indie and foreign "Davids" and toward the massively marketed major-studio "Goliaths," the five nominees announced Tuesday represent what has become the category's hallmark mix of giants and kids with slings.
Together, Disney's "Coco" and Fox's "The Boss Baby" and "Ferdinand" have grossed in the neighborhood of $1.4 billion worldwide and each enjoyed domestic distribution to more than 3,200 domestic venues. "Loving Vincent," released in the U.S. by Good Deed Entertainment, has quietly grossed over $6.5 million while never playing in more than 218 theatres. GKids release "The Breadwinner" has a domestic gross under a quarter-million dollars, and has not expanded beyond 43 theaters.
That doesn't mean the smaller films didn't have global ambitions, or the larger ones didn't tell personal stories.
I dreamed a dream of Oscar on Monday night. Not of winning one, nothing so presumptuous as that. My dream was that I'd completely slept through the nomination announcements. That scared me so much I immediately woke up and got to the TV on time. True story.
I had Oscar anxiety not only because these awards have meant a lot to me since childhood but because I was intensely curious about the results. This was supposed to be the most up in the air Oscar race in years, and I wanted to know how, no pun intended, things would shape up.
For though we live in an age awash with awards prognosticators and websites that claim to chart who is up and who is down on an almost daily basis, nothing predicts the Oscars like the Oscars, and no amount of reading Golden Globes and SAG tea leaves can give you a clear idea of what those voters will do.
Sorry, everyone. Those loud noises you heard around 5:30 this morning were almost certainly my shouts of delight and surprise at learning that "Phantom Thread" — generally perceived to be an awards-season also-ran — had received an unexpected but richly deserved haul of six Academy Award nominations.
Paul Thomas Anderson's 1950s London chamber drama was expected to receive at least three of those six, for Jonny Greenwood's score, Mark Bridges' costumes and Daniel Day-Lewis' lead performance as a petulantly exacting couturier named Reynolds Woodcock.
Far fewer industry observers were predicting the film to factor into the highly competitive races for best picture, director and supporting actress, where Lesley Manville received a nomination for her magnificently icy turn as Woodcock's sister and business partner.
Greta Gerwig is celebrating her Oscar nominations by yelling on the phone.
The “Lady Bird” writer and director, who was snubbed in the directing category at the Golden Globes earlier this year, but was later nominated for a DGA Award when they were announced a few days later, was recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Tuesday in the directing and writing categories. “Lady Bird” was also nominated for best picture, a prize awarded to a film’s producers.
When reached by the Los Angeles Times after the announcement, Gerwig was still coming to terms with her achievements: She is only the fifth woman ever to be nominated in the academy’s directing category and that honor was not lost on her.
I hope that girls or women who want to be filmmakers ... look at this and they feel like, ‘Yeah, I'm going to go make my movie.’ ... Because I selfishly want to see those movies. … I couldn't be more excited for the next generation of women who want to make movies.
The most unpredictable Oscar season in years finally came into focus Tuesday morning as the 90th Academy Awards nominations were announced, with nine films representing a wide range of genres earning best picture nods and Guillermo del Toro's fantastical fable "The Shape of Water" leading the field with 13 nominations.
To have been a part of a film like ‘Lady Bird’ was a true privilege, and I am incredibly grateful to the academy for recognizing this wonderful story about the beauty and strength of women. I am especially thrilled to share this moment with [costar] Laurie Metcalf and our leader and director, Greta Gerwig, who, like Lady Bird, is an incredible woman and a dear friend.
Saoirse Ronan on her lead actress Oscar nomination
Mary J. Blige’s inclusion in awards season conversations is surely a surprise — not because the Queen of Hip Hop Soul’s performance in “Mudbound” is anything less than stellar, but who would’ve expected that the “Rock of Ages” and “I Can Do Bad All by Myself” actress would turn out a deeply emotional and dramatic rendering? But Tuesday morning, Blige became a double Oscar nominee, for her supporting role in Dee Rees’ Jim Crow-era epic and for the original song “Mighty River” with Raphael Saadiq and Taura Stinson.
“It feels really good to be recognized, with all these nominations, because it shows that someone recognizes my hard work and the dedication and the time and how serious I’m taking this craft,” Blige said in an interview with The Times. “That means a lot because I never wanted to take this lightly, [and] I didn’t want people to look at me like I didn’t take it seriously — because you have the Queen Latifahs and the Tarajis [P. Henson] and the Angela Bassetts and the Viola Davises, who worked really hard to pave the way for us. I really want them to be proud of me as well.”
“Mudbound” follows two soldiers — one black, one white — who’ve returned to small-town Mississippi following World War II to discover that their ideas about race have been dramatically altered, although those of the people around them have not. Their families are connected by land with the Jacksons, black sharecroppers, claiming an ancestral connection to the soil they till while the McAllans have just recently purchased the farm. Blige plays Florence, the matriarch of the Jackson clan, opposite an ensemble cast that includes Jason Mitchell, Rob Morgan, Carey Mulligan, Garrett Hedlund, Jason Clarke and Jonathan Banks.
After taking home Golden Globe, SAG and Critics Choice awards this season, "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" star Frances McDormand could be closing in on the Oscar.
The actress, 60, won her first Academy Award more than 20 years ago for her role as the pregnant police chief in the Coen brothers’ black comedy "Fargo" and currently stands one Grammy shy of EGOT status. This year, she’s nominated in the lead actress category for her portrayal of a bereaved mother in director and screenwriter Martin McDonagh’s best picture-nominated film.
In an interview with The Times on Tuesday morning, McDonagh called McDormand "probably the best actor of her generation."
Greta Gerwig became only the fifth woman in Oscars history to be nominated for best director on Tuesday, and she also picked up a nomination for best original screenplay for “Lady Bird.”
The meaning of that best director nomination is not lost on Gerwig, who recalled her feelings when Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman to win an Oscar for best director for “The Hurt Locker” in 2010.
I remember crying and feeling so excited and feeling like she did it and there she is and so much more feels possible. And I hope that girls or women who want to be filmmakers look at this, and they feel like, ‘Yeah, I’m going to go make my movie.’