The Strange Case of the Golden Globe Awards

The Golden Globe nominations came out today.  Unlike the Oscar’s or the Grammy’s, their nominations and awards tend to make sense because they reward people based on the value of their performance.  The Oscar seems to get wrapped up in sentimental attachments to older actors or to the cause d’jour.  They certainly nailed it this year by nominating the small film “Slumdog Millionaire” which should win both the Globes and Oscar Best Picture award.  Having said that, the nomination of Heath Ledger for Best Supporting Actor seems strange.  I don’t really have a quibble with nominating him for a Globe, but I would have expected to to be for Best Actor instead of supporting actor.  The studios submit their films for nomination which means Warner Brothers requested the suppporting actor nomination.  Clearly, Ledger dominated the film and clearly the film wouldn’t have been considered for a Best Picture nomination (which it thankfully didn’t get) without his performance.  I suspect the studio didn’t want to offend Christian Bale by pushing Ledger while ignoring Bale (there were no trade magazine ads pushing Bale for Best Actor).  As cold as it sounds, they need Bale back for the next film.  It also virtually assures Ledger the award since his competition in the Supporting Actor category is far less formidable.  Without having seen all the films nominated in this category, it still seems safe to assume Sean Penn will win the Best Actor category.  However, Penn, Langella (who’s performance is already being hailed as incredible), DiCaprio and Pitt would probably all beat Ledger.  Cruise and Downey Jr. have no chance for the tepid Tropic Thunder.  Their nomination alone indicates the lack of quality in this category.  Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Ralph Fiennes are talented actors, but clearly aren’t stronger than Ledger in this category.

Personal favorite Mickey Rourke’s nomination for Best Actor has to be a dream come true for an actor who could have just as easily been a contestant on Celebrity Rehab this year.  In his heydey making films like Pope of Greenwich Village, Barfly, Diner and Rumblefish he was considered the next James Dean.  When his career fell apart after he decided to take up drinking and boxing (never a good combination) everyone assumed he’d never be heard from again.  He reappeared with a brilliant yet small role in Spun a couple of years ago and now appears to poised to take his rightful place as a respected, elite actor.

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~ by toddc2001 on December 11, 2008.

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