Sarah posted the other day about Bradley Cooper heading out of New York right after the Oscar nominations. His film Maestro earned seven nominations, including Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Actress, but not Best Director.
He was, however, nominated for Best Director at the BAFTAs and this might explain where he was going – to London, where he was In Conversation with Oscar-nominated (Billy Elliot, The Hours, The Reader) and BAFTA winner Stephen Daldry. Carey Mulligan is also in London and seen arriving for a talk show appearance. So this is a direct appeal to BAFTA voters who, obviously, were big on Maestro. Remember there is significant overlap between BAFTA and the Oscar Academy. So working it in the UK for the Maestro team checks both boxes.
But it’s the difference in directing, isn’t it? For the BAFTA, BCoop was actually nominated over Martin Scorsese. At the Oscars, Scorsese was on the ballot instead of Bradley … and Greta Gerwig. Three directors were nominated by both the Oscars and BAFTA: Justine Triet, Christopher Nolan, and Jonathan Glazer. BAFTA put through Bradley, Alexander Payne, and Andrew Haigh while the Oscars chose Yorgos Lanthimos and Scorsese. Which kinda says to me that in both those institutions, Greta was actually in last place! I know we were already mad after Tuesday, but doesn’t that just make you angrier?
That said, I don’t want to put that anger on Bradley Cooper specifically. I know we’ve all seen people online and on social media and even here have been amused at his thirst – but I would rather see someone want it, badly, than pretend to not want it when they really do. I appreciate that BCoop isn’t fronting, that he isn’t performing nonchalance. Maestro is not the film I responded to the most among the Best Picture nominees, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t care about it, it doesn’t mean he didn’t pour himself into it, because he did. So I’m not here to begrudge him doing the MOST to be acknowledged for it.
What the conversation is, or should be, is about who gets acknowledged by institutions like the BAFTAs and the Oscars when they’re doing the most. Because they are all campaigning, and hard. The Barbie team and the Killers of the Flower Moon team and the Oppenheimer team, they’ve allllll been campaigning, the thirst is equal. But time and time again, they only call certain numbers and not others, that’s the issue. Everybody can be thirsty. Only some get their thirst quenched.