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Kyle Kersten was a true friend of TCM. One of the first and most active participants of the Message Boards, “Kyle in Hollywood” (aka, hlywdkjk) demonstrated a depth of knowledge and largesse of spirit that made him one of the most popular and respected voices in these forums. This thread is a living memorial to his life and love of movies, which remain with us still.

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Lead or Supporting Role?


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457 replies to this topic

#1 Bogie56

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 05:01 AM

Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1999 …

IMO Haley Joel Osment was a co-lead along with Bruce Willis in The Sixth Sense.  The movie is his story and he is in the entire thing.  I think this is a case of not wanting to put a juvenile in competition in the lead category.  We saw this years before with Tatum O’Neal in Paper Moon.  Toni Collette is supporting.

I saw Being John Malkovich again not long ago and thought Catherine Keener is the female lead.  Oscar had her in the supporting category but she is never far from what’s going on in this film.  I also thought John Cusack and John Malkovich are the male co-leads.  Cameron Diaz is supporting.

Sarah Polley is the lead actress in Go.

Reese Witherspoon is supporting in Election.  Matthew Broderick is the male lead.

Al Pacino and Russell Crowe are co-leads in The insider.

 


#2 skimpole

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Posted 23 May 2017 - 05:50 PM

Yes, I h

 

One more question:

 

The Mask of Zorro: Antonio Banderas is leading. Are Catherine Zeta-Jones and Anthony Hopkins supporting? I remember being disappointed that C Z-J didn't have that much screentime.

 

Good question.  I have my Actress list sewn up, but she could make my supporting list if she has a supporting role.  Supporting Actress is a bit odd this year:  I haven't seen three of the nominees, I don't remember Redgrave's performance at all, and Dench's role is just too short.



#3 LawrenceA

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Posted 23 May 2017 - 09:58 AM

Yes, I have a hard time limiting it to a top 10. Sometimes when there are two good leading roles I just have to throw out one of them to avoid an overly long list. It's an exceptional year for juvenile roles too. 

 

One more question:

 

The Mask of Zorro: Antonio Banderas is leading. Are Catherine Zeta-Jones and Anthony Hopkins supporting? I remember being disappointed that C Z-J didn't have that much screentime.

 

I have Zeta-Jones as a lead, but could be persuaded otherwise.



#4 CoraSmith

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Posted 23 May 2017 - 03:42 AM

I just finalized my 1998 choices, and was surprised to find that I have more Best Actress nominees than any other category, a rarity for my lists.

Yes, I have a hard time limiting it to a top 10. Sometimes when there are two good leading roles I just have to throw out one of them to avoid an overly long list. It's an exceptional year for juvenile roles too. 

 

One more question:

 

The Mask of Zorro: Antonio Banderas is leading. Are Catherine Zeta-Jones and Anthony Hopkins supporting? I remember being disappointed that C Z-J didn't have that much screentime.



#5 LawrenceA

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Posted 22 May 2017 - 08:25 PM

I just finalized my 1998 choices, and was surprised to find that I have more Best Actress nominees than any other category, a rarity for my lists.


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#6 CoraSmith

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Posted 22 May 2017 - 03:08 PM

I'd have Bacon as supporting

Maybe you're right.



#7 skimpole

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Posted 22 May 2017 - 02:59 PM


 

Wild Things: Neve Campbell, Kevin Bacon and Matt Dillon are leading. Denise Richards is supporting.

 

I'd have Bacon as supporting



#8 CoraSmith

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Posted 22 May 2017 - 02:50 PM

Re, The Celebration I had Henning Mortizen as supporting for some reason though I should see it again.

Ans I had Scarlet Johansson as supporting in The Horse Whisperer but am ready to grant I may be wrong about that one.

The scenes I remember most are those of Scarlett riding the horse before, during and after the accident, but I'll only nominate her for juvenile anyway. 



#9 Bogie56

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Posted 22 May 2017 - 01:57 PM

Suggestions for 1998:

 

The Celebration (Festen): The main conflict is between the eldest son and the father, so Ulrich Thomen and Henning Moritzen are leading. The daughter and the youngest son, by Paprika Steen and Thomas Bo Larsen, are substantial supporting roles.

 

The Horse Whisperer: R. Redford and K. S. Thomas are leading. Scarlett Johansson is juvenile and also leading. 

 

Wild Things: Neve Campbell, Kevin Bacon and Matt Dillon are leading. Denise Richards is supporting.

 

Re, The Celebration I had Henning Mortizen as supporting for some reason though I should see it again.

Ans I had Scarlet Johansson as supporting in The Horse Whisperer but am ready to grant I may be wrong about that one.



#10 CoraSmith

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Posted 22 May 2017 - 02:29 AM

Suggestions for 1998:

 

The Celebration (Festen): The main conflict is between the eldest son and the father, so Ulrich Thomsen and Henning Moritzen are leading. The daughter and the youngest son, by Paprika Steen and Thomas Bo Larsen, are substantial supporting roles.

 

The Horse Whisperer: R. Redford and K. S. Thomas are leading. Scarlett Johansson is juvenile and also leading. 

 

Wild Things: Neve Campbell, Kevin Bacon and Matt Dillon are leading. Denise Richards is supporting.



#11 skimpole

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 06:03 PM

Just to be clear, Cate Blanchett is the only lead in Elizabeth?


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#12 Bogie56

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 11:22 AM

Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1998 …

IMO Billy Bob Thornton was a lead in A Simple PlanOscar and many other Awards put him in the supporting category.  Bill Paxton is a co lead.  Bridget Fonda and Brent Briscoe are supporting.

Both Jane Horrocks and Brenda Blethyn are co-leads and Michael Caine the lead actor in Little Voice.  Oscar had Blethyn as supporting though this move was probably by design as not to split any potential votes.  Little Voice is as much about the mother as the daughter.  

Meryl Streep and Renee Zellweger are both leads in One True Thing.

Daniel Craig is supporting in Love Is the Devil.

Brendan Fraser is a co-lead in Gods and Monsters.

 


#13 skimpole

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Posted 15 May 2017 - 11:57 AM

Just to be clear, we are all on the same page that Mark Wahlberg is the only lead in Boogie Nights?


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#14 skimpole

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 11:37 PM

Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1997 …

IMO Guy Pearce and Russell Crowe are the two leads in L.A. Confidential

 I'm going to suggest Kevin Spacey as a co-lead, since his story is equally important throughout the movie, he gives a better performance than the other two, is crucial to solving the mystery, while the last 20 minutes of the movie when he isn't there are clearly the worst in the entire film.

 

As for The Devil's Advocate, the film lives or dies on what one thinks of Pacino's hammy performance.  Reeves is a lead, but clearly not award-worthy.  Theron is not award worthy as either lead or supporting.  I'd say Pacino was a lead.



#15 JamesStewartFan95

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 03:47 PM

Two more cases of doubt in 1997:

 

The Devil's Advocate - Keanu Reeves is leading, but how about Al Pacino and Charlize Theron?

 

Clockwatchers - I think Toni Collette is the only leading role.

 

I have Collette as the lead in Clockwatchers.


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#16 LawrenceA

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 12:54 PM

Two more cases of doubt in 1997:

 

The Devil's Advocate - Keanu Reeves is leading, but how about Al Pacino and Charlize Theron?

 

Clockwatchers - I think Toni Collette is the only leading role.

 

I would put Theron as a lead, and Pacino as supporting.

 

I haven't seen the other to comment.


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#17 CoraSmith

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 12:47 PM

Two more cases of doubt in 1997:

 

The Devil's Advocate - Keanu Reeves is leading, but how about Al Pacino and Charlize Theron?

 

Clockwatchers - I think Toni Collette is the only leading role.


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#18 LawrenceA

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 11:04 AM

Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1997 …

 

Michael Caine and Judy Davis are supporting in Blood and Wine.

 

That's a 1996 movie.



#19 Bogie56

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 07:09 AM

Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1997 …

IMO Guy Pearce and Russell Crowe are the two leads in L.A. Confidential

Jonathan Pryce, Jonny Lee Miller and James Wilby are all leads in Regeneration.

Agnes Jaoui and Sabine Azema are both lead actresses in On Connait La Chanson.

Michael Caine and Judy Davis are supporting in Blood and Wine.

Samuel L. Jackson is the lead actor in Jackie Brown.


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#20 Bogie56

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Posted 12 May 2017 - 04:45 PM

I go the other way. Macy and Buscemi both have more screen time than McDormand and she doesn't show up until the end of the first act, so I think she's definitely supporting but so is everyone else. It's a fairly short movie that splits its time between 3 characters, who do interact but are mostly separate from each other (none of the three share very much screen time with each other) so like ensemble or omnibus films, it has no lead. I have Macy, McDormand, and Buscemi all supporting and think that's accurately reflective of their screen time and roles. 25-30 minutes of screen time in a 90 minute movie doesn't equal the lead to me.

 

I feel similarly about any film that gives roughly equal weight to a large cast. Glengarry Glen Ross has no lead in my opinion, nor Usual Suspects, Traffic, Syriana, Margin Call, etc. Travolta is only a lead (and the only lead) in Pulp Fiction because he's co-lead in the third section and the sole lead in the first. Whether No Country for Old Men is without a lead or Brolin has enough screen time to count I waver on a bit. I think you have to have substantially more screen time in particular but also narrative focus to count as the lead in a movie.

 

screen time is not the only determining factor in whether it is a lead or supporting role.  You also have to look at who's story it is.  I stand by McDormand and Macy being the leads in Fargo.


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