[36 OUT OF 46 FILMS REMAINING]-[29 DAYS TO OSCARS]
In 1977, “Annie Hall” won the Academy Award for Best Picture. It also took Best Screenplay, Best Director, and Best Actress. So to count out Woody Allen in any regards is ill-advised. However, with the heated competition this year, “Midnight In Paris” probably won’t be pulling in that many awards.
Described as Woody Allen’s return to genre, “Midnight In Paris” follows Gil Pender (Owen Wilson) as he discovers a whole new side to Paris when the bells strike midnight. Accompanied by a stellar cast of Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard, and Michael Sheen, the film definitely has star power. And with Woody Allen’s unique brand of comedy making itself present throughout its entirety, the film really brings the audience back to Allen’s glory days. But that won’t be enough to beat the likes of “The Artist” or “The Descendants”.
Woody Allen is the king of this category… literally. Allen holds the record for most nominations in the Original Screenplay category, now with 15, winning two of those: one for “Annie Hall” (1977) and the other for “Hannah & Her Sisters” (1987). With “Midnight In Paris” being branded as Allen coming back into his own, it all makes for a strong case for Allen to win this year. Allen did succeed in winning the Golden Globe award for Best Screenplay and is nominated for the Writers Guild Award for the same, which we will find out the results come February 19th.
The only two screenplays I see posing a threat are “The Artist”, as it may make a break for gathering as many of its 10 nominations as possible. Also “Margin Call” which is a superbly written piece from first time screenplay writer J.C. Chandor. Though I feel Allen has the veteran status and could easily upset both of these, it will remain to be seen.
This will be Woody Allen’s seventh time being nominated for Best Director, winning once in 1977 for his work on the acclaimed “Annie Hall”. Will Woody Allen win this year? Probably not, unless “Midnight In Paris” pulls off an upset and wins all its categories. However, if “The Artist” is to win Best Picture, Michel Hazanavicius will most likely take this directing award. Otherwise, if “The Descendants” is to win, Alexander Payne will follow suit. Though Woody Allen more than deserves this award for most of his work, this will not be his year.
I strongly suspect “The Artist” will be a front-runner in this category, but seeing “Midnight In Paris” twice now, the portion of the film set in the 20’s is absolutely visually striking in all senses. The set decorations are exquisite, the actual art is authentic, and overall, there is little reason why “Midnight In Paris” wouldn’t be able to win this award.