We’re barely into awards season, but there’s little doubt on most minds that “12 Years a Slave,” helmer Steve McQueen’s horrific depiction of one of the worst moments in U.S. history, will finds its place on nomination ballots — and that includes possible recognition for Michael Fassbender’s work as a sinister slave owner.
To wit: Variety film critic Peter Debruge writes that this role’s “actorly transformation may be Fassbender’s most courageous yet, tapping into a place of righteous superiority that reminds just how scary such racism can be.”
But Fassbender seems to have worked nonstop since he broke out in films like Quentin Tarantino’s 2009 “Inglourious Basterds” and McQueen’s 2008 “Hunger” and he seems tired — so much so that he says in the November issue of GQ that campaigning for awards this year is “just not going to happen, because I’ll be in New Zealand. I’ll be on the other side of the world. You know, I get it. Everybody’s got to do their job. So you try and help and facilitate as best you can. But I won’t put myself through that kind of situation again.”
It’s understandable that Fassbender, whose accolades include a Golden Globe nomination for 2011’s “Shame,” (also directed by McQueen) wouldn’t be interested in repeating the process a couple years later. But is it possible he is so good at this part that he need not campaign for nominations he’ll inevitably get — even if he may not want them? Or must he keep up this act a little longer?