The summer season of blockbusters is almost over, so now attention is switching to the autumn and winter months, which sees Hollywood begin to release their Academy Award baiting movies. Already we've seen some of the trailers for some of the movies which will undoubtedly be getting some nominations; Saving Mr. Banks, The Wolf Of Wall Street, Captain Phillips, Inside Llewyn Davis, as well as stuff we haven't had a glimpse of yet but we're sure they'll be great, like The Monuments Men, All Is Lost, Foxcatcher and American Hustle.
But three movies in particular have come to our attention as the most obvious candidates to be bringing home some of the golden baldies, and they are The Butler, Diana and 12 Years A Slave. But which of these three is the most Oscar-y of them all?
U.S. Release Date: August 16th, a bit early to still be remembered come next February.
Directed by: Lee Daniels, of The Paperboy and two-time Oscar-winning Precious.
Stars: Forest Whitaker (Oscar-winner for The Last King Of Scotland), Robin Williams (Oscar-winner for Good Will Hunting), Terrence Howard (Oscar-nominated for Hustle & Flow), Jane Fonda (Oscar-winner for Klute and Coming Home, nominated an additional five times), Cuba Gooding Jnr. (Oscar-winner for Jerry Maguire), Vanessa Redgrave (Oscar-winner for Julia, nominated an additional five times), Oprah Winfrey (Oscar-nominated for The Colour Purple), Alan Rickman, James Marsden, John Cusack, Liev Schreiber, Lenny Kravitz, Alex Pettyfer and Mariah Carey.
What makes it so Oscar-y?: Well, that Oscar-magnet director mixed with that Oscar-magnet cast for starters. Then there's the fact that it covers some of the great (and not so great) U.S. presidents from the vantage point of one man, with some HUGE political and social events constantly in the background. Plus it's based on a true story, so what's not for the Oscar-voters to love?
Entertainment.ie's Oscar Prediction: Best Film nomination, Best Director nomination, Best Actor nomination for Whitaker, Best Actress nomination for Winfrey, Best Supporting Actor nomination for Williams, Best Supporting Actress win for either Fonda or Redgrave, the other getting a nomination.
U.S. Release Date: TBA, but the Ireland release date is September 20th, so probably not long after that. Prime Oscar season.
Directed by: Olivier Hirschbiegel, of the Oscar-nominated Downfall and the rightly forgotten about The Invasion.
Stars: Naomi Watts (Oscar-nominated for The Impossible and 21 Grams), Naveen Andrews (Golden Globe-nominated for Lost) and… uhm… that's pretty much it for recognisable faces.
What makes it so Oscar-y?: Are you kidding? The people's princess played by an actress who seems to be channelling the Terminator… She absolutely will not stop, EVER, until she gets that Oscar! After Meryl Streep won for her part in The Iron Lady, it would appear that the Academy have a major hard-on for biopics of powerful women, plus it looks like it could potentially make everyone in the audience cry.
Entertainment.ie's Oscar Prediction: Best Film nomination, Best Director nomination, Best Actress win for Watts (unless Blanchett really is as good as everyone is saying she is in Blue Valentine, plus there's another Streep movie on the horizon with August: Osage Country. Oh, and Emma Thompson for Saving Mr. Banks. Actually, this one is too tough to call right now. Check back with us in a few months when we've seen them all!)
12 YEARS A SLAVE
U.S. Release Date: October 18th, which is basically saying "Nominate This!"
Directed by: Steve McQueen, of the somehow Oscar-ignored Hunger and Shame. We doubt they'll forget to mention him this time, though.
Stars: Chiwetel Ejifor (Golden Globe-nominated three times), Brad Pitt (Oscar-nominated four times), Michael Fassbender (Golden Globe-nominated for Shame), Benedict Cumberbatch (Golden Globe-nominated for Sherlock), Paul Giamatti (Oscar-nominated for Cinderella Man), Quvenzhane Wallis (Oscar-nominated for Beasts Of The Southern Wild), Sarah Paulson and Paul Dano.
What makes it so Oscar-y?: This is basically Django Chained, and while it may seem a little too straight forward a story for someone with such an experimental streak as McQueen, he has packed his cast out with so many recognisable names and faces that it puts even Tarantino's epic take on slavery to shame.
Entertainment.ie's Oscar Prediction: Best Film nomination (it's too early to call, but our money is currently on The Wolf Of Wall Street), Best Director Win for McQueen, Best Actor nomination for Ejofor, Best Supporting Actor nomination for Pitt and/or Cumberbatch, and possibly Best Supporting Actor Win for Fassbender (if McConaughey doesn't swipe it out from under him).
We'll be pitting three more potential Oscar winners head-to-head(-to-head) soon!