Sally Hawkins' perf recalls Field's past win

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Sally Hawkins’ perf as the at-first reluctant union leader Rita O’Grady will instantly remind Acad voters of Sally Field’s memorable turn in “Norma Rae.” The comparisons are apt. Though Field was trying to form a union while Hawkins is bent on keeping one in line, the two share a trait in that they’re willing to sacrifice their personal lives for the good of the proletariat.

Field won the Oscar for the 1979 pic, while Hawkins, worthy of award consideration for her role in Mike Leigh’s “Happy-Go-Lucky” two years ago, could make up for that omission this time around.

Hawkins isn’t the only actress from the film who could grab Acad attention. At a time when the lead actress race is one of the most competitive in years, the supporting field appears to be wide open. Enter veteran Brit thesp Miranda Richardson, who already has two nominations on her resume and has great fun playing the workers’ Westminster champion, Barbara Castle. Rosamund Pike and Geraldine James also chip in noteworthy turns in this femme-driven ensemble.

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