DECRYPTION – Muses of a selection outside the Hollywood paths, the French directors give priority to Denis Villeneuve and Steven Spielberg in the best director category.
It is possible to breathe fresh air into the awards season when Hollywood seems to have dubbed the same favorites for the Oscars. The English equivalent of the Caesars delivered a harvest of unexpected names on Thursday, favoring young shoots to the detriment of veterans celebrated so far. Like the historic double directed by French filmmakers Audrey Diwan, golden lion in Venice for her story of a clandestine abortion The Event and Julia Ducournau, Palme d’Or at Cannes with her fantastic fable Titanium.
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The tricolor directors slip into the race for the statuette of the best achievement and will try to prevail, on March 13, on another Cannes darling, the Japanese Ryûsuke Hamaguchi (Drive My Car). This international trio deprives the ubiquitous Denis Villeneuve (Dunes), Steven Spielberg (West Side Story) or Kenneth Branagh (Belfast). Among the favorites of the race for the Oscars, only remain Jane Campion and her westernPower Of The Dog and Paul Thomas Anderson’s nostalgic tale, Licorice Pizza.
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Céline Sciamma also in the running
Surprisingly alone Drive My Car appears in the preselection of the best foreign film. The tricolor feature film selected is that of another director: Little mom by Celine Sciamma. Parallel mothers by Pedro Almodóvar, Julie in 12 chapters by Joachim Trier and God’s hand by Paolo Sorrentino complete this quinté.
This reshuffling of cards is screaming in the categories interpretations. Nineteen lucky winners out of twenty-four received their first nomination, at the Bafta, on Thursday. Exit the Nicole Kidmans (Being The Ricardos), Kristen Stewart (yet on conquered ground in the homeland of Lady Di with spencer) or the brilliant Olivia Colman (The Lost Daughter ). Voters voted for new faces: the Norwegian Renate Reinsve, revelation of Julie in 12 chaptersthe singer Alana Haim, object of temptation in Licorice Pizza and the young Emilia Jones who marvels at sign language in the remake of The Aries Family, CODA.
At 60, Briton Joanna Scanlan wins her first nomination for the moving melodrama After Love about a widow who discovers a family secret from her late husband. Like his partner Ruth Negga in ChiaroscuroTessa Thompson is singled out for her portrayal of an African-American woman posing as white in 1920s Harlem. House of Gucci.
hegemony of Dunes thanks to the technical categories, disavowal for West Side Story
For men Benedict Cumberbatch (Power Of The Dog) and Will Smith (The Williams Method) continue their faultless and are joined by Leonardo DiCaprio, inaudible scientist in Don’t Look Up. Their remaining opponents are less familiar Adeel Akhtar (Ali & Ava) Mahershala Ali (Swan Song) and Stephen Graham (The Chef). Javier Bardem (Being the Ricardos) and Denzel Washington (Macbeth) did not convince.
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Kirsten Dunst is the sole performer of Power of the Dog to be snubbed. The voters preferred the heroine of the series to him Outlander Caitriona Balfe (Belfast), Ariana DeBose (West Side Story), Jessie Buckley (The Lost Daughter)Ann Dowd (Mass), Aunjanue Ellis (The Williams Method) and Ruth Negga. Her life-and-screen husband in Power Of The Dog, Jessie Plemons, reunites with Kodi Smit-Mcphee. They will face the very young (12 years old) Woody Norman of Our children’s souls and Mike Faist (fabulous bum of West Side Story). The most experienced Ciarán Hinds (Belfast) and hearing-impaired comedian Troy Kotsur (Coda) bring up the rear.
This renewal is less striking when we look at the total nominations which respects more the order established by the precursor ceremonies of the Oscars The Power of the Dog and West Side Story awarded at the Golden Globes, shunned by Hollywood and the American unions of directors, producers and actors. Hegemony in the technical categories, Dunes leads the Bafta dance with 11 citations, followed by 8 of Power Of The Dog and the six of Belfast, a semi-autobiographical chronicle of Kenneth Branagh’s childhood memories. These three dramas are in the running for the queen statuette of best film with satire Don’t Look Up and Licorice Pizza . Nightmare Alley, The French Dispatch, West Side Story, The Last Duel can get dressed. Like Daniel Craig’s final outing as James Bond, Dying can wait.
Limited impact on the Oscars
This strange mixture of blockbusters and art house films, very open to the international scene, reflects the drastic reforms undertaken by the Bafta to improve the diversity of its winners. To broaden the horizons of members of the British Academy, they have a shortlist of films eligible to receive a nomination. A way to encourage people to go see the little thumbs of the competition. Thereby, West Side Story only converted 5 of the 15 selection possibilities he had!
From there to imagine that the Oscars who will announce their nominations on February 8 will show the same open-mindedness, caution… The Oscar nominations process does not have this pre-selection system. Above all, it ended on Tuesday, before it could be influenced by the favorites of their British cousins.
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Bafta: the French Ducournau and Diwan shake up the nominations