October 26, 2016
        Viola Davis will be campaigned in Best Supporting Actress for "Fences"                Mel Gibson to be Honored with the Hollywood Director Award at the 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Michael Moore drops a surprise new film with "Michael Moore in TrumpLand"                Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for October                Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, Naomie Harris, Lily Collins get Honors at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams        

Telluride wraps with increased buzz for “King’s Speech,” “Black Swan” and “127 Hours”

By Sean O’Connell

Hollywoodnews.com: The Telluride Film Festival drew to a close yesterday. Before we turn our attentions to Toronto, and the buzz that will emerge from that festival with regards to the annual Oscar race, let’s take a spin around the dial and see which films connected with the awards experts who attended Colorado’s exclusive, fan-friendly event.

Tom Hopper’s “The King’s Speech” seems to have emerged as a favorite among critics and audience members. Writing for HitFix, Gregory Ellwood says Colin Firth’s turn as a stuttering King George VII “may arguably be the best performances of his career” while adding that “Speech” is “one of The Weinstein Company’s strongest awards season contenders in quite some time.”

Kris Tapley at In Contention mirrors that sentiment, saying, “Without question, the film launching full speed ahead and into the Oscar season this week is Tom Hooper’s ‘The King’s Speech.’ I truly haven’t heard an unkind word about the film all weekend here in Telluride, and I imagine that goodwill will continue into the Toronto fest this week as well.”

Tapley must have missed Eugene Novikov’s less-enthusiastic tweet regarding “Speech” for Cinematical, but he’s right. The film was widely praised and now needs to avoid the pitfalls of perceived frontrunner status. It has damaged awards-worthy films in the past.

Darren Aronofsky’s “Black Swan” also continued to impress critics as it moved from Venice to Telluride. Writing for Slash Film, Peter Sciretta called it “a brilliant mind fuck. It is one of the boldest films I’ve seen produced by a Hollywood studio in years.”

And Danny Boyle’s “127 Hours,” which had its official North American premiere while sneak-previewing at Telluride, found its audience members to be feint of heart. Buzz out of early screenings have star James Franco seriously contending for a Best Actor trophy as he holds down the difficult role of a mountain climber trapped under a boulder while hiking in Utah.

Expect more on these titles and more as Toronto gets underway this Thursday. We’ll be reporting live from Canada, so bookmark HollywoodNews.com and check back often for updates.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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