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Lead or Supporting Role?


kingrat
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Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1964 …

 

I think Peter Ustinov rightfully belongs in the lead actor category for Topkapi.  In fact, I kept a record of what he said on TV Ontario’s Elwy Yost show many years ago regarding his Oscar … ”I don’t know who I was supporting.”  Though he probably has the largest role in the film his part was not that of the leader of the gang and Ustinov had long been considered a character actor.

 

I have Fredric March, Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas all as leads in Seven Days In May.

 

Michael Caine and Stanley Baker as leads in Zulu.

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I believe that both The Pawnbroker and The Train were shown at European film festivals in 1964, but only released generally in 1965. I'm happy to let Bogie make the call on this one.

 

I would be inclined to consider Michael Caine as a supporting actor in Zulu. Basically, however, I'm just pleased that other people have seen this superb film.

 

Capucine in The 7th Dawn: I would say supporting. William Holden and Susannah York are the leads.

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I have The Pawnbroker as 1964, per IMDb and wiki, although its US release was in 1965. Correct or incorrect?

 

Correct.  Rod Steiger won the Best Actor prize at the June 1964 Berlin Film Festival for The Pawnbroker.  The Train was released in the UK in 1964.  So both are 1964 films.

I've seen Zulu 7 times and would say Caine is the co-lead but there you go.

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I think Danny Peary in Alternate Oscar mentions that at times Julie Andrews in Mary Poppins is more a supporting than a lead performance.  Does anyone agree?  (Because that would make my best supporting actress much much easier.)

 

No way.  Who would she be supporting?  She is the lead all the way.  That is just plain ridiculous.  Being the lead is not always determined by screen time.

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Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1965 …

 

I think Frank Finlay rightfully belongs in the lead actor category for Othello.  I believe Kingrat and Swithin pointed out that Iago actually has more lines than does Othello.  But Maggie Smith is supporting as Desdemona.  It is a not a big part.

Some others as I see it:

James Fox and George Segal are co-leads in King Rat.

Claire Bloom is supporting for The Spy Who Came In From the Cold

Barbara Harris is supporting for A Thousand Clowns.

James Stewart and Richard Attenborough are both leads in The Flight of the Phoenix.

Orson Welles and Keith Baxter are both leads in Chimes at Midnight.

 
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Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1965 …

 

I think Frank Finlay rightfully belongs in the lead actor category for Othello.  I believe Kingrat and Swithin pointed out that Iago actually has more lines than does Othello.  But Maggie Smith is supporting as Desdemona.  It is a not a big part.

Some others as I see it:

James Fox and George Segal are co-leads in King Rat.

Claire Bloom is supporting for The Spy Who Came In From the Cold

Barbara Harris is supporting for A Thousand Clowns.

James Stewart and Richard Attenborough are both leads in The Flight of the Phoenix.

Orson Welles and Keith Baxter are both leads in Chimes at Midnight.

The absence of Maggie Smith and Claire Bloom in the lead actress race would leave that category exceptionally weak. I'd say they were as important to their films as Patricia Neal in Hud. (Oh wait, I put Patricia Neal in the supporting actress list.)

 

The lead actor race, however, is particularly strong, with a definite "British invasion" factor.

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Does anyone know why Ian Bannen, of all the 11 members of the cast of The Flight of the Phoenix, was the only one to get an oscar nomination?  I can understand Stewart being passed over since he already had one and it was a competitive year.  Kennedy and Duryea play minor roles, and maybe they found Borgnine hammy.  But I don't think they thought Attenborough was a lead, and that still leaves Kruger, Finch, Marquand and Fraser.

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I have wondered this myself, skimpole. Hardy Kruger is the one I tend to remember from The Flight of the Phoenix. Perhaps the studio wanted to promote Ian Bannen's career at a time when English actors were very popular.

 

I think is was simply a matter of Bannen having the more flamboyant role.  That makes it 'easier' for voters to pick up on.

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Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1966 …

I think Alan Arkin rightfully belongs in the supporting actor category for The Russians are Coming, the Russians are Coming.  He disappears from the story too often into the ensemble.  Carl Reiner is arguably the only lead.

Walter Matthau as Whiplash Willie in The Fortune Cookie is a hair away from being a co-lead.  Though he steals the picture the last time I saw this I determined it was still a supporting role.

Candice Bergen is a lead actress in The Sand Pebbles.

Both Liv Ullmann and Bib Andersson are leads in Persona.

Burt Lancaster and Lee Marvin are co-leads in The Professionals.

Both Yves Montand and James Garner are co-leads in Grand Prix.

Michael Caine and Nanette Newman are the leads in The Wrong Box.

Both Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach are co-leads in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.  Lee Van Cleef is supporting.

Both Zero Mostel and Michael Crawford are co-leads in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.

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Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1966 …

 

Candice Bergen is a lead actress in The Sand Pebbles.

Both Liv Ullmann and Bib Andersson are leads in Persona.

Michael Caine and Nanette Newman are the leads in The Wrong Box.

Both Zero Mostel and Michael Crawford are co-leads in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.

Bogie, some might wonder whether Candice Bergen is any kind of actress in The Sand Pebbles, although she has a leading role and is very beautiful. I would never have believed that she would become such a polished comic actress in future years.

 

If I move Liv Ullmann to the lead actress category, at least I'll have four nominees instead of three. This strikes me as a weak year for female performances, despite one overwhelmingly great performance. The supporting actress category isn't much better. And I've seen about fifty movies from 1966; perhaps some of you will remind me of actresses I've overlooked.

 

Zero Mostel is on my top five best actor list, and Forum will be mentioned in the supporting actor list, too.

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If I move Liv Ullmann to the lead actress category, at least I'll have four nominees instead of three. This strikes me as a weak year for female performances, despite one overwhelmingly great performance. The supporting actress category isn't much better. And I've seen about fifty movies from 1966; perhaps some of you will remind me of actresses I've overlooked.

 

I've seen 149 films from 1966 yet I still had trouble getting enough nominees for lead and supporting actress.

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Bogie, some might wonder whether Candice Bergen is any kind of actress in The Sand Pebbles, although she has a leading role and is very beautiful. I would never have believed that she would become such a polished comic actress in future years.

 

In the context of her character, I thought Candice did quite well.

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It's been too long since I last saw Far from the Madding Crowd to make a call. 

 

It's also been awhile since I've seen the other two, but I would say:

 

Bedazzled - Dudley Moore and Peter Cook leads

 

The Producers - Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder leads

 

 

I would like to hear some recommendations for Best Supporting Actress for '67. I only came up with 3.

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I don't know if we've already done this, but perhaps we should clarify once more who is the lead and who's supporting in Bedazzled, The Producers and Far from the Madding Crowd

 

I too have Cook and Moore as leads in Bedazzled.  In my lists I have allowed for recognized comedy teams such as Laurel and Hardy and the Marx Bros.  So in this case I am going to list Cook & Moore together.

I too have both Mostel and Wilder as leads in The Producers.  Bates and Christie as leads in Madding Crowd and Finch as supporting.

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Leading vs. Supporting Categories in 1967 …

 

The year in which a film is considered for an Oscar is based on its release in the city of Los Angeles.  For the favourite performance thread we are using a film’s initial theatrical release no matter which city it is in.  For that reason I have picked 1967 for the year in which to judge The Producers as it was released in Pittsburg in November, 1967 (see wikipedia reception notes and Gene Wilder TCM interview).  But I also think Gene Wilder rightfully belongs in the lead actor category for this film.

I’m putting Alan Arkin in the supporting category for Wait Until Dark.

I’m keeping Anne Bancroft in the lead actress category for The Graduate.

 
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I haven't see this one yet, but the imdb lists it as a tv mow and then in the release notes goes on to list lots of information about various theatrical releases - Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980).  So, I think this is fair game as a theatrical release for the purposes of the favourite performance thread.

It may have had different versions, but whatever.

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