Newsletter: How will the Oscars react to this week’s award nominations?

Florence Pugh, Saoirse Ronan and Emma Watson in Greta Gerwig's "Little Women."
Florence Pugh, left, Saoirse Ronan and Emma Watson in “Little Women,” a movie that’s received scant early awards attention.
(Wilson Webb / Columbia Pictures)

Screen Actors Guild Awards voters have spoken. The Golden Globes nominations are out. Superior slates from the Los Angeles and New York film critics groups are available for those wanting to dig a bit deeper.

That means the Oscar fields have been thinned out, though there’s still time for motion picture academy members to watch the year’s best films and, in some cases, make some better choices.

Welcome to the Gold Standard, the newsletter from the Los Angeles Times that helps guide you through the ins and outs of the awards season leading up to the Oscars.

I’m Glenn Whipp, The Times’ awards columnist and your newsletter host.


SAG Awards and Golden Globes noms announced

The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. announced its Golden Globes nominees Monday. The slate was dutiful, a tad dull and almost completely devoid of women. In the old days, “Cats” would have swept through the nominations on the comedy/musical side. Now? “We have better taste,” one HFPA member told me, conveniently ignoring the group’s nomination of “Jojo Rabbit” for best picture, musical or comedy.

I sized up the nominees, while a colleague, Times columnist Mary McNamara, decried the group’s sexism.

The SAG Awards nominations dropped Wednesday, and the big news came with Bong Joon Ho’s masterpiece making the cut for best movie ensemble. It’s the second foreign film to earn an ensemble nomination, and that could bode well for its quixotic quest to become the first foreign language movie to win the best picture Oscar.

 Song Kang Ho and Jang Hye Jin in "Parasite."

‘Parasite’ tops the Los Angeles Film Critics vote

Speaking of “Parasite” (as I often do here), the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn. named it the year’s best movie, also giving awards to its director, Bong, and stellar supporting actor Song Kang Ho. I voted for the annual honors, as did several of my Times colleagues — Justin Chang, Geoff Berkshire, Mark Olsen, Kenneth Turan and Jen Yamato. Justin and I stayed afterward to break down the vote and, generally, just express good tidings of great joy about the results.

Directors Bong Joon Ho, Marielle Heller and Noah Baumbach (back row), Greta Gerwig, Todd Phillips and Lulu Wang at The Times’ Envelope roundtable.
(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Here’s one group of directors that includes women

The Times recently invited directors Bong Joon Ho, Marielle Heller, Noah Baumbach, Greta Gerwig, Todd Phillips and Lulu Wang to break bread, discuss their craft and explain how they incorporate their personal stories into their movies. Times film writers Mark Olsen and Amy Kaufman were asking the questions, so you know the conversation is going to be lively and smart.


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