Oscars: Two Lead Contenders on Lionsgate Awards Plate
When the Lionsgate Awards site went LIVE today and listed their slate of contenders involving Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Fisher Stevens’ Stand Up Guys, Gary Ross’ The Hunger Games, Nicholas Jarecki’sArbitrage, and J.A. Bayona’s The Impossible, I started to analyze how this year could pan out for smaller films that are trying to make a play; even more so, the performances in them.
I’ve touted on podcasts for weeks that Nate Parker utterly deserves a citation inArbitrage, a raw, authentic turn that stands as one of the year’s bests. His co-star Richard Gere is currently being predicted in the Lead Actor top five, mostly on the notion that after years of ignoring and snubbing, voter’s eyes would finally be open to the charm that Gere portrays in Jarecki’s film. As Hugh Jackman remains a mystery of the season in Les Miserables and the word of Anthony Hopkins’ work in Hitchcock rallies some muted enthusiasm, a first-time nominee is bound to crack the top five. Believe me, Bradley Cooper might have a leg up on Gere given his film’s Best Picture chances and the powerful Weinsteins backing, but perhaps an overdue veteran has the gas to go the distance.
The closest that Gere has come to Oscar attention was in Taylor Hackford’s An Officer and a Gentleman (1982) and Rob Marshall’s Chicago (2002). The latter landed a Golden Globe in Gere’s hands and a Screen Actors Guild nomination. As ‘Robert Miller,’ Gere puts his allure that made him a star to good use as be bounces off his co-stars Nate Parker and Susan Sarandon. Arbitrage opened to decent reviews scoring 84% on both Rotten Tomatoes and Critics Choice critics. The film’s outstanding screenplay by Nicholas Jarecki could score him a deserved citation from the writer’s and be this year’s Margin Call, landing an unexpected Original Screenplay nomination.