It's getting hot and heavy in Oscar land! The Screen Actors' Guild and Producers' Guild just announced their nominations for 2006 in the acting and best film categories, respectively.
So far so boring - no surprises in the noms. I'm pleased that Rinko Kikuchi, a veritable unknown, continues to gain recognition for her performance as a deaf mute in Babel. I'm not sure she has a chance against those shaping up to be her competition: Cate Blanchett in Notes on a Scandal and Jennifer Hudson in Dreamgirls. And as brilliant as Forest Whitaker was in The Last King of Scotland, I'm really pulling for Peter O'Toole (in Venus). Here's a legendary actor who's never won an Oscar despite 7 nominations. He received an honorary Oscar last year, and he responded with a handwritten letter saying he was "enchanted" at the thought, but that he was "still in the game, and might yet win (the award) outright." Between this SAG nom and the Globes nom, he's pretty much guaranteed an Oscar nomination, if not an outright Oscar!
A complete list of SAG noms can be found at http://www.sagawards.com/PR_070104.htm; PGA noms are at http://www.producersguild.org/pg/awards_a/. And check out next week's print version of the Seattle Gay News for my own 2006 top 10 list of films!
I'll return to the blogosphere next Tuesday with the Directors' Guild nominations and the National Board of Review winners; then Friday it's the BAFTA noms and Critics' Choice Awards. The clock is ticking - faster and faster, it seems - until the Oscars nominations are announced on January 23rd!
Rinko Kikuchi in Babel, photo courtesy Paramount Classics; Peter O'Toole and Jodie Whittaker in Venus; photo courtesy Miramax Films