Jump to content
 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Why Were They Nominated for an Oscar?


Terrence1
 Share

Recommended Posts

We all know that there is a long list in Hollywood of stars who should have been nominated for an Oscar but, for some reason, were overlooked. But there is an equally long list of actors whom we can't help but wonder why on Earth they were nominated. In some cases, their appearances in the film were extremely brief, or they just didn't seem to be very demanding of their talent. I'm curious of some of your choices for actors who fall into this latter category. I don't intend for this to become mean-spirited, but just an honest discussion among movie lovers. I hope there are some responses to this, since I'd like to know how others feel. If you would like to add your own selection, my suggestion is that each response contain only one actor, so this doesn't become too burdensome.

 

Now, one who comes to mind for me is Carol Channing in "Thoroughly Modern Millie." I love this movie, and Ms. Channing is, as always, a delight. But her role seems to be unimportant to the over-all plot and doesn't even begin to display her tremendous talent. Some critics have suggested that her nomination was a peace offering for her being passed over for "Hello, Dolly". Any thoughts on this?

 

Terrence.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to agree with your reason for Carol Channing. And by the same token, Paul Newmans award for 'The Color Of Money' was the academies apology for his not winning for 'The Hustler'. I think 'The Color Of Money' performance was good, but certainly not his best or even the best for that year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agrree with you, Aimalac. When one thinks of all the great Paul Newman performances, I doubt that many peopole would think of "The Color of Money." I don't recall it even being that great a film, let alone an outstanding Newman performance. It does make one wonder.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep, I'd say it was not only an "apology" by the Academy for his not winning in '61, but also for his not winning the Oscar just four years earlier in '82 and for his performance in *The Verdict*.

 

But then again, look at his "competition" that year:

 

BEN KINGSLEY in "Gandhi"(who won)

Dustin Hoffman in "Tootsie"

Jack Lemmon in "Missing"

Paul Newman in "The Verdict"

Peter O'Toole in "My Favorite Year"

 

(...yep, as they say, "Timing in life is everything")

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well playing either a historical figure or someone much different then yourself helps one win an Oscar.

 

Ben as Gandhi meets both of those qualifications. Hoffman as Tootsie meets one of them.

 

You are spot on that timing is everything when it comes to winning an award like the Oscar.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is it possible that they are hesitant to give an award for a star's greatest performance because it may be a fluke and they wish to see the star deliver another strong performance before they consider them worthy?

 

It does seem to be the trend that a star's best performance is ignored while their very next one is honored.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sometimes receiving the nomination is ultimately no blessing whilst being omitted does wonders for ones reputation or the rep of the performance that was snubbed.

 

A minor example comes to mind in the form of Madame Maria Ouspenskaya (sic?) who was nominated twice for two roles that are around six minutes each. in 1939 she was nominated for her terrific turn in Love Affair. Terrific, but better than Rosalind Russell and Paulette Goddard in The Women, Margaret Hamilton ( who is actually in in The Wizard of Oz for all of seven minutes, but what seven minutes!); Alice Brady in Young Mr. Lincoln, or Bette Davis in Juarez*? Eh, not to me.

 

As a result, I' ve been kind of "Was Ouspenskaya all that great or did she just rely on that FACE and that ACCENT and that PRESENCE, along with the clout she had as a well-regarded drama teacher to earn those two nods over performers who were more deserving?"

 

Then I saw her in Conquest last week having it out with Charles Boyer in one two minute scene. It is fabulous - the best part of an otherwise pretty mundane little period film. As such, I am totally Team Ouspenskaya now and quite frankly, she derserved a nomination for those six minutes over what she does (admittedly well) in Dodsworth.

 

*Bette would sooner have DIED than taken a supporting nod, but that's what her role in Juarez is.

 

Edited by: JonnyGeetar on Jan 17, 2012 4:30 PM

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, then here's probably the best known example of this...Jack Lemmon, for his performance in *Save the Tiger*, and more than a decade after his critically acclaimed performance in *The Apartment,* and especially *The Days of Wine and Roses*.

 

However, getting back to the OP's original intent here, here's a name I could never understand as to why any of his films were ever nominated (16 times) or won (twice), though his work was in what might be considered in the "lesser" categories of "Short Subject". I'm talkin' about Pete Smith.

 

 

Now, I don't know about you guys, but I've always thought those *Pete Smith Specialites* were just about the lamest things I've ever watched. Yep, just about every joke in 'em seems to fall flat.

 

 

(...at least to me anyway...but then again, I think by now you folks around here know how little a sense o' humor I have, RIGHT?!)

 

 

:^0

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, that would explain it, alright. Evidently the competition in "Short Subjects" wasn't exactly all that "fierce" back then, huh! ;)

 

Saaaay, ya know finance, I'm now wonderin' if maybe the extremely marginally talented Adam Sandler or Will Farrell would switch to doin' only Shorts if maybe they'd have a chance for an Oscar today? 'Cause I'm thinkin' THAT would be their ONLY chance of ever gettin' one o' those puppies!

 

(..well, that of course would be IF the competition in that category hasn't gotten any tougher since the days Pete Smith was doin' HIS thing!!!)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

>Then I saw her in Conquest last week having it out with Charles Boyer in one two minute scene. It is fabulous - the best part of an otherwise pretty mundane little period film.

 

I agree. That was fantastic and the best 2 minutes in the movie.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Pete Smith's voice and odd jokes were so important to us older guys, when we were kids in the 1950s, some of us were still imitating his voice well into the 1980s, even though his shorts didn't begin to appear on television until TCM came along in the '90s.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

>The Robert Benchley shorts were the ones that were funny.

 

Hmm, now that is odd. I never thought anything Robert Benchley did or said was funny. Never.

 

But Pete Smith was great! :)

 

Why do you suppose some of us find one funny and not the other, and vice versa?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

> Now, one who comes to mind for me is Carol Channing in "Thoroughly Modern Millie." I love this movie, and Ms. Channing is, as always, a delight. But her role seems to be unimportant to the over-all plot and doesn't even begin to display her tremendous talent. Some critics have suggested that her nomination was a peace offering for her being passed over for "Hello, Dolly". Any thoughts on this?

 

Yes. *Thoroughly Modern Millie* was nominated at the 40th Academy Awards (films of 1967). *Hello Dolly* was nominated at the 42d Academy Awards (films of 1969). It's hard to believe that Channing was nominated for *Thoroughly Modern Millie* because she had been snubbed for *Hello Dolly* two years later.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You know, I don't find the Robert Benchley shorts funny at all (I recall That Uncertain Feeling and one where he plays a houseguest, I've seen more but didn't find them too memorable.) He's funny in The Major and the Minor and I Married a Witch though and seems like he'd've been a fun guy to know.

 

Pete Smith's Wonderful World of Smarm though is something I find insufferable.

 

Aye what? (slide whistle)

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

> {quote:title=finance wrote:}{quote}Russell AND Goddard in THE WOMEN? Russell stole the film. Goddard faded into the woodwork.

I beg to differ on the matter of Goddard fading into the woodwork, sometimes there's something to be said for subtlety, and I love the way her character is written, "yeah, we gotta be a mother and a pal..." Plus she plays off Norma Shearer's stiltedness* wonderfully.

 

Check it out again if ye get the chance.

 

Paulette was nominated for So Proudly We Hail, which I saw many, many, many years ago (back on AMC maybe?) She's good, but not it's not an "Oscar Role"- although I am glad she was nominated somewhere along the way as she was a terrific actress and a gorgeous girl.

 

*A marvelous sort of stiltedness though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In more recent years Judi Dench won Best Supporting for SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE, a film she barely appeared in (and I think she even said something about "her 6 minutes on screen"). Seems obvious that was really given to her because she didn't win Best Actress the year before for MRS BROWN. Hollywood likes to give Best Actor/Actress to people who've never won as sort of lifetime achievement awards as well, like Henry Fonda winning for ON GOLDEN POND. Was that really his best work, or even the best work of that year? I don't think so. We all know he basically won that for THE GRAPES OF WRATH and his other previous great performances.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

> {quote:title=FredCDobbs wrote:}{quote}

> > fiance wrote: The Robert Benchley shorts were the ones that were funny.

> Hmm, now that is odd. I never thought anything Robert Benchley did or said was funny. Never.

>

> But Pete Smith was great! :)

>

>

>

>

>

> Why do you suppose some of us find one funny and not the other, and vice versa?

>

Sorry Fred, but finace is right. Okay, though admittedly all this IS a matter of taste, but at least the Benchley shorts had that "Droll Factor" workin' for 'em.

 

But hey, if you find the endless pratfalls and Pete Smith's nasally voiceovers (which if you think about it, sounds an awful lot like Fred Allen, but somehow withOUT Fred Allen's great understatedly droll delivery) entertaining, then so be it!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

© 2023 Turner Classic Movies Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Settings
×
×
  • Create New...