kingrat

Lead or Supporting Role?

544 posts in this topic

 

Brando is staying a lead in my list, though. Just as you named Jean Simmons a lead in Spartacus, although she has relatively little screen time. Brando has as much, if not more, in Streetcar, But I didn't have a stopwatch out, so I can't be certain. 

 

I think the fact that Spartacus was an epic had a lot to do with my considering Simmons a female lead.  I have Olivier as a co-lead as well.

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Guns of Navarone - Peck and Niven as leads, Quinn as supporting sounds right.

 

Spartacus - I also wondered about whether Olivier should be considered a lead. If that's what you have, Bogey, I'll go with it.

 

Judgment at Nuremberg - I don't see Schell as a lead. Definitely not his story. Tracy is a lead, and arguably Dietrich.

 

Long Day's Journey Into Night - Just saw this again when it was shown recently on TCM. Robards in support and the others as leads is how I would categorize it.

 

Cape Fear - I consider Mitchum as supporting, but Polly Bergen as a co-lead with Peck. Mitchum is a serious contender in the supporting category.

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Cape Fear - I consider Mitchum as supporting, but Polly Bergen as a co-lead with Peck. Mitchum is a serious contender in the supporting category.

 

If so, that seriously changes up my list, since I have Mitchum as lead, and he's the winner!

 

How about The Great Escape? I have always considered McQueen, Attenborough and Garner as the leads, and everyone else supporting. Sound right?

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How about The Great Escape? I have always considered McQueen, Attenborough and Garner as the leads, and everyone else supporting. Sound right?

 

I have McQueen as the lead, and the others are supporting.  Attenborough is on the line, Garner is definitely supporting.

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If so, that seriously changes up my list, since I have Mitchum as lead, and he's the winner!

 

How about The Great Escape? I have always considered McQueen, Attenborough and Garner as the leads, and everyone else supporting. Sound right?

 

I'm with all of this this.  3 leads in the Great Escape.  

Re, Cape Fear Mitchum is in the entire film.  Definitely a co-lead.  Equal weight cat vs. mouse.  I have John Malkovich as co-lead in In the Line of Fire (1993) for the same reason.

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Long Day's Journey Into Night (1962) - given the film (and play's) epic length, are all four people leads?

 

Richardson and Hepburn as the leads and the rest in support is what I have.

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Judgment at Nuremberg - I don't see Schell as a lead. Definitely not his story. Tracy is a lead, and arguably Dietrich.

 

 

 

I don't know if Nuremberg is any one person's story so it is hard to judge it on that basis.  Certainly Tracy is a lead as he anchors the film.  Schell has a tremendous amount of dialogue in the film and is the central focus for a fair amount of time.  It is a close call.

For me, Dietrich's part is a sub-plot.

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I'll go along with you guys. Mitchum gives up his supporting actor award for the shark-infested waters of the best actor pool. 1962 is another year where the competition for best actor is especially tough.

 

Moving Attenborough to the lead category makes the supporting actor ranks for 1963 thinner still. With James Fox as a lead for The Servant along with Dirk Bogarde, best actor is strong, but I have to reach for supporting actor nominees. Brandon de Wilde belongs as a lead actor for Hud; the movie is his story as much or even more than Newman's.

 

Still in 1963: does Julie Christie belong in lead or supporting for Billy Liar?

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Still in 1963: does Julie Christie belong in lead or supporting for Billy Liar?

 

I debated on that one last night, as well. I eventually settled on lead, but just barely.

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I'll go along with you guys. Mitchum gives up his supporting actor award for the shark-infested waters of the best actor pool. 1962 is another year where the competition for best actor is especially tough.

 

Moving Attenborough to the lead category makes the supporting actor ranks for 1963 thinner still. With James Fox as a lead for The Servant along with Dirk Bogarde, best actor is strong, but I have to reach for supporting actor nominees. Brandon de Wilde belongs as a lead actor for Hud; the movie is his story as much or even more than Newman's.

 

Still in 1963: does Julie Christie belong in lead or supporting for Billy Liar?

 

Yes, Brandon de Wilde is definitely a lead in Hud.   People are divided on Patricia Neal.  I have decided upon the female lead myself.

 

I just watched Billy Liar again a month ago.  Christie is definitely supporting.  She doesn't come into the film in meaningful way until about two-thirds of the way through then surprisingly she is more or less wall paper for Tom Courtenay.  She tells Tom that she is moving to London then it is up to him to meet her on the train and come with her or not.

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Bogie, I think that makes sense. Julie Christie's character in Billy Liar isn't really developed; it's just that she makes a big impression when she finally appears because she has so much star power.

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It's weeks in the future, but I'm going to suggest that all the actors in Advise and Consent are supporting.

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It's weeks in the future, but I'm going to suggest that all the actors in Advise and Consent are supporting.

I agree with you. Henry Fonda starts out as the leading character, but then disappears.

 

Did we ever decide if Robert Ryan and Paul Douglas are leads in Clash by Night?

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Peter Ustinov in Topkapi?

 

Burt and Scofield both leads in The Train? And are we going with 1964 for the year?

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Peter Ustinov in Topkapi?

 

Burt and Scofield both leads in The Train? And are we going with 1964 for the year?

 

Aha, Topkapi!  I am going to pull out my Peter Ustinov quote when he was interviewed on TVO's Elwy Yost, which Tom knows very well.

When Yost brought up his Supporting Actor Oscar, Ustinov said ... "I don't know who I was supporting."

Ustinov lead actor all the way.

And yes, Scofield and Lancaster both leads in The Train.  I've always had 1964 as the year for The Train.

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Bogie, is The Pawnbroker also 1964? I believe that it and The Train were shown at film festivals in Europe in 1964, but released elsewhere in 1965.

 

With Scofield and Ustinov gone, I'm done to six candidates for best supporting actor in 1964, even with the addition of two from The Pawnbroker.

 

If we're looking ahead to 1965: I consider Olivier, Finlay, and Maggie Smith all leads for Othello.

 

Claire Bloom a lead for The Spy Who Came In From the Cold.

 

Orson Welles and Keith Baxter both leads for Chimes at Midnight.

 

Dirk Bogarde is a lead in Darling. He won the BAFTA for Best Actor. Laurence Harvey, though top-billed, is supporting.

 

Who are the leads in Ship of Fools? Werner, Signoret, and Leigh?

 

 

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Yes on The Pawnbroker for 1964.

 

Othello I have Olivier and Smith as leads, and Finlay and Redman as support. I understand the argument for Finlay as lead, though.

 

 

I have my lists done up through 1966 at this point, although they are subject to change.

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Bogie, is The Pawnbroker also 1964? I believe that it and The Train were shown at film festivals in Europe in 1964, but released elsewhere in 1965.

 

With Scofield and Ustinov gone, I'm done to six candidates for best supporting actor in 1964, even with the addition of two from The Pawnbroker.

 

If we're looking ahead to 1965: I consider Olivier, Finlay, and Maggie Smith all leads for Othello.

 

Claire Bloom a lead for The Spy Who Came In From the Cold.

 

Orson Welles and Keith Baxter both leads for Chimes at Midnight.

 

Dirk Bogarde is a lead in Darling. He won the BAFTA for Best Actor. Laurence Harvey, though top-billed, is supporting.

 

Who are the leads in Ship of Fools? Werner, Signoret, and Leigh?

 

1964 for The Pawnbroker.

Re, Othello.  Othello and Iago are co-leads and Desdemona is supporting.

Bloom is supporting in Spy.  She just isn't in the film that much and it certainly isn't her story.

Baxter and Welles are co-leads in Chimes.

Werner, Signoret and Leigh as co-leads of Ship of Fools.

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1952: Richard Burton obviously belonged in the star category for MY COUSIN RACHEL. I would probably put Colette Marchand there, too, for MOULIN ROUGE. Although she disappears after the first half of the film, it’s much the largest and most important female role, second in importance only to Jose Ferrer’s Toulouse-Lautrec.

 

 

 

Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1952…

 

I don’t think there is any question that Richard Burton belongs in the leading actor category for My Cousin Rachel.  He was a relatively new Hollywood star in 1952 and de Havilland was the marquee name but Burton’s part was still a lead.

 

Jack Palance belongs in the leading category for Sudden Fear for much the same reasons as Burton does for My Cousin Rachel.

 

I am putting Michael Macliammoir’s Iago as a co-lead in Orson Welles’ Othello.  Desdemona is supporting.

 

I have Collette Marchard as supporting in Moulin Rouge.  Ferrer is the sole lead.

 

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I didn't wish to start a new thread to debate the year of release of this film so here is my post ...

I view Room at the Top as a 1958 film.  Both the imdb and wikipedia list it as 1959.  Wikipedia goes as far as to say it was released in the UK on January 22, 1959.

Yet it won Britain's BAFTA Award for Best Picture of 1958 and Simone Signoret won Best Actress for 1958 as well.  This is well before the days of vhs or dvd screeners so I would say that Room at the Top had to have been in release in the UK in late 1958.

There are not many instances where I chose to ignore the imdb or wikipedia but this is one of them.  Of course, everyone is free to chose as they wish.

I am going with 1967 for Mel Brooks The Producers.  Wikipedia says the film was released March 18, 1968 but then in its release notes it goes on to say that it had a disastrous initial release in Pittsburg on November 22, 1967.  So, for me 1967 it is.

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I didn't wish to start a new thread to debate the year of release of this film so here is my post ...

I view Room at the Top as a 1958 film.  Both the imdb and wikipedia list it as 1959.  Wikipedia goes as far as to say it was released in the UK on January 22, 1959.

Yet it won Britain's BAFTA Award for Best Picture of 1958 and Simone Signoret won Best Actress for 1958 as well.  This is well before the days of vhs or dvd screeners so I would say that Room at the Top had to have been in release in the UK in late 1958.

There are not many instances where I chose to ignore the imdb or wikipedia but this is one of them.  Of course, everyone is free to chose as they wish.

I am going with 1967 for Mel Brooks The Producers.  Wikipedia says the film was released March 18, 1968 but then in its release notes it goes on to say that it had a disastrous initial release in Pittsburg on November 22, 1967.  So, for me 1967 it is.

 

That is weird.  Looking at last year's BAFTA eligibility rules, the deadline for theatrical release isn't December 31, as one might expect, or December 25, (so that they have a week in the theatres), but February 12 of this year.   But movies which open after January 1 are eligible if they are "screened" for BAFTA voters by December 17.  I don't know what the rules were in 1959, but that might explain the oddity.  The rules for 2007 awards give a similar deadline for February 8.

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That is weird.  Looking at last year's BAFTA eligibility rules, the deadline for theatrical release isn't December 31, as one might expect, or December 25, (so that they have a week in the theatres), but February 12 of this year.   But movies which open after January 1 are eligible if they are "screened" for BAFTA voters by December 17.  I don't know what the rules were in 1959, but that might explain the oddity.  The rules for 2007 awards give a similar deadline for February 8.

 

Yes, as a BAFTA member I am aware of that rule.  I somehow cannot believe that Room at the Top would have managed to get enough votes to win best picture with a few member screenings only.  There were no dvd or vhs screeners sent to members in those days.  The first round of votes are cast at the beginning of January to determine the nominees.

A google search of Variety reviews came up with December 31, 1958.  That would infer a public screening.  There are many publications that list Room as a 1958 film.  Lots more list it as 1959.

This may explain the confusion:  In July 1958 the film went before the British censor Board and was given an X rating.  Terry Bolas writes in his book Screen Education: From Film Appreciation to Media Studies about Room at the Top.  It is complicated, but it includes a report that was written in 1958 based on a review of the film.  "...the controversy which had surrounded the release of Room at the Top in 1958 when the Report was being written.  Given an X certificate, Rank cinemas had refused to screen the film, which had consequently been released in smaller independent cinemas."

So, I would think that the January 1959 general release came on the heels of the films growing popularity in 1958.

That's as far as I have gotten on the matter at this time.

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Bogie, what year is Beat the Devil?

 

1953 presents a few questions, too:

 

From Here to Eternity - Do you consider Deborah Kerr leading or supporting?

 

The Big Heat - Is Gloria Grahame leading or supporting?

 

Niagara - Is Marilyn Monroe leading or supporting? I tend to see Joseph Cotten and Jean Peters as the leads.

 

Julius Caesar - I believe we've established that James Mason is the only lead.

 

How To Marry a Millionaire - I see Bacall and Grable as the stars, unsure about Monroe.

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Bogie, what year is Beat the Devil?

 

1953 presents a few questions, too:

 

From Here to Eternity - Do you consider Deborah Kerr leading or supporting?

 

The Big Heat - Is Gloria Grahame leading or supporting?

 

Niagara - Is Marilyn Monroe leading or supporting? I tend to see Joseph Cotten and Jean Peters as the leads.

 

Julius Caesar - I believe we've established that James Mason is the only lead.

 

How To Marry a Millionaire - I see Bacall and Grable as the stars, unsure about Monroe.

 

Yikes, I had always had Beat the Devil as a 1954 film but I see wikipedia is quite clear that it is a British film released in 1953.  Even the imdb concurs on that.  I'm glad you mentioned it as I wouldn't want to leave that film out of 1953!

I think Kerr, Lancaster and Clift are the 3 leads in From Here to Eternity.

I saw The Big Heat again a few weeks ago and determined that Gloria Grahame is supporting.  It is a close call because of her screen time but it seemed like supporting to me.

I have 3 leads in Niagra.  Cotten, Monroe and Peters.

I only seen bits of How to Marry.

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