2011 Oscar Nominations: Things to know

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The Academy has cast its votes and the Oscar nominations have been announced. Now, there are some people who don’t put much weight into awards in the entertainment industry. For the most part, I agree with them. The Oscars, however, are different, at least for me. These are the most prestigious of all movie awards on the planet Earth. They still hold a bit of clout.


Now, I am not going to make my Oscar predictions here. There are still a lot of the films I haven’t seen yet. The purpose of this article is to inform you, the reader, of important things you should know about the 84th Academy Award nominations.


First off, there were nine movies nominated for Best Picture. The number of films allowed to be nominated over the history of the awards has fluctuated from three to 12. However, from 1945 to 2009, only five films were allowed to be nominated. This tradition ended last year at the 2010 Academy Awards when 10 films were nominated. Many people think having more than five films nominated decreases the value of the nomination; since they are able to hand out more nominations, they, being the academy, don’t have to be as picky with their choices. For the most part, I agree with them. But last year, nearly all of the films nominated deserved to be there. This year, however, I don’t feel it is the case.


Gary Oldman was nominated for Best Actor for his work in “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.” Many people feel this nomination was what is called a “Career Oscar.” Essentially, Oldman’s performance in “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” wasn’t phenomenal but the man has had a very prestigious acting career. Therefore, his Oscar nomination is more in commemoration of his entire career rather than just one film. The same thing happened in 1969 with John Wayne for “True Grit.”


Meryl Streep was nominated again for Best Actress for her role in “The Iron Lady.” Streep has been nominated 14 times for Best Actress and three times for Best Supporting Actress, making her the most nominated performer in all the acting categories. However, she has only won twice: in 1979, she won Best Supporting Actress in “Kramer vs. Kramer” and in 1982, she won Best Actress for “Sophie’s Choice.”


One more thing: Melissa McCarthy was nominated for Best Supporting Actress for “Bridesmaids.” While some people may dislike the humor in “Bridesmaids,” I just want to point out one thing. Having an acting nomination for a pure comedy is rare. By pure comedy, I mean not a drama/comedy or a musical. “Bridesmaids” is a pure comedy. And to have Melissa McCarthy nominated for her role is fantastic.


By Kelly Cannon
Life Editor

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