Oscar Fever | The Moviegoer

Monday, October 23, 2006

Oscar Fever

Posted By on Mon, Oct 23, 2006 at 7:02 PM

Here's a good column about why studios wait until late in the year to release all of the Oscar contenders.  "Oliver Stone" and "Tom Logan" should certainly read it.

When this season is all said and done, I wonder what will be the film that should have been released earlier? 

My guess is Catch a Fire.  It goes wide release this week.  It's the lone Oscar contender for Focus Features, the studio behind Far from Heaven, Lost in Translation, The Motorcycle Diaries, Enternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Pride & Prejudice, and Brokeback Mountain.  If it takes top spot at the box office, it will really spell disaster for Flags.  While this studio knows what it's doing, I wonder how much momentum it would have generated if released early in the summer?

Of course, Focus released The Constant Gardener that time last year and it didn't last, despite being on several critics lists.

Alternatively, it's easy to pinpoint the film that has benefited from early release: Little Miss Sunshine.  It will be out on DVD in late December for all of those who missed it (and just in time for critics Top 10 lists) and may sneak into the race for the final Best Picture slot if the citics circles (particularly NY, LA and National Board of Review) applaud it. 

I'm interested to see if The Departed continues its box office momentum.  If it does, you can mark it down for a Best Picture nomination (it is absolutely deserving).

Over the next three weeks, we get some enjoyable popcorn flicks (Casino Royale, Deja Vu, A Good Year, Borat).  Bobby and Stranger than Fiction open in wide release.  Volver, Babel, The History Boys, and Fur all open in limited release. 

At this same time, Little Children, The Queen, The Last King of Scotland, and Running with Scissors will all fold into wide release.  Point is: November will be a busy month for serious moviegoers. 

I wonder if Catch a Fire will get lost in the mix?





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