(Click here for Sarah’s Nostradamus on Matthew McConaughey. As I said then, she’s a big ball hitter.)
Back in May in my Cannes preview, I noted that Matthew McConaughey was having a busy year, with five movies, including Cannes’ selections Mud and The Paperboy. It was for two other movies—Bernie and Magic Mike—though, that Matthew McConaughey is the recipient of a New York Film Critics’ Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor. These awards are the first real Oscar prognosticators we have—NYFCC winners have a 90% success rate in landing subsequent Oscar nods. Which means that what I wrote in that Cannes preview on May 16, Sarah pencils in Matthew McConaughey for an Oscar nomination in 2013, has a 90% chance of coming true.
Ha! Allow me a mini-gloat.
It’s not in the bag, though. There’s still that 10% chance of it not happening, which is why I don’t want to full-on gloat. The Best Supporting Actor race is, like the Best Actor category, crazy competitive this year. Not only that, it’s a category dominated by industry stalwarts—the average of the current favorites is like 417, with Tommy Lee Jones, Robert De Niro and Alan Arkin being virtual locks. Phillip Seymour Hoffman is also a heavy favorite, but Russell Crowe and Eddie Redmayne are making recent surges as critics are now seeing Les Miserables. Django Unchained will start screening soon, which will put some grease on the wheels of the Leonardo DiCaprio train. And then there’s another of the venerable gents of acting, Hal Holbrook, who could get the Ruby Dee You’re Still Alive And We Love That nomination for Promised Land.
My list of nominees currently stands at Jones, De Niro, Arkin (because I think Argo is going to get a ton of nominations but he’s the only viable acting nod), and Hoffman, but that fifth spot is the one everyone is fighting for. Though the competition is stiff, especially from Crowe (although maybe his weak singing torpedoes him), and DiCaprio (because the Academy likes him and they’ll love that he’s playing against type in Django). And another issue facing McConaughey—besides the overall competiveness of the category—is the question of which movie to nominate him for. Magic Mike is the most widely known, but the lesser-seen Bernie is the best of his supporting performances, and unlike the New York critics, the Academy will have to pick just one. But with the NYFCC award in his pocket, McConaughey just threw his chips on the table and is making a real play for an upset.
This year is THE BEST.
(Lainey: how do you feel if you’re DeNiro, Arkin, Hoffman, and the others that New York - DeNiro’s town! - just told them that MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY was better?)