×

Oscar Contenders Turn on the Charm for Awards Season Q&As

Moviegoers far outside of Hollywood might think that the Oscar actually goes to the “best performance,” whatever that is. But those on the circuit know the award doesn’t always correlate with the nominated performance. Other factors include the idea that an actor is “due,” how well the film scores financially and, of course, likability.

Jean Dujardin, for example, was tireless in working the circuit, and always came off as funny, outgoing and self-effacing, despite heavy competition from a field that included George Clooney.

So far this year, the best charm offensive has been waged by Eddie Redmayne, who plays Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything.” It’s a fantastic, transformative performance that could win the best actor statue on its own merits. But helping the situation is the fact that Redmayne is almost ridiculously endearing.

Working against Redmayne is the fact that he faces some stiff competition, and is perceived as the newcomer of the group. But at a SAG Q&A last week, the thesp received a standing ovation, and the more he talked about the research he did into ALS, the more it became apparent he was no amateur. He’s a trained, Tony-winning actor who threw his heart and soul into a role he felt great responsibility for. At several points, he became visibly emotional talking about meeting with people suffering from ALS and their families.

At this point, the perceived actor frontrunner is Michael Keaton, well-received for “Birdman.” But Keaton has been shooting a film and has been largely unable to press the flesh. Some at the Redmayne Q&A, who had seen Keaton speak recently, remarked on the night-and-day difference between the two thesps.

While many have speculated on how much Q&As can sway voters, it certainly can’t hurt when an admirable performance meshes with a likable individual. And in a race this tight, every ounce of charm helps.

More Film

  • dolittle-DRD_Tsr1Sht_1011_RGB_4_rgb-1

    Robert Downey Jr. Embarks on Perilous Journey in First 'Dolittle' Trailer (Watch)

    Robert Downey Jr. is setting sail with some furry friends in the first trailer for “Dolittle,” Universal Pictures’ reimagining of the classic story about a man who could speak to animals. “We have no choice but to embark on this perilous journey,” he says. Set to a rendition of Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World,” [...]

  • Parasite

    Bong Joon Ho's 'Parasite' Posts Powerful Opening in North America

    Bong Joon-Ho’s dark comedy “Parasite,” which won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival, has launched with a spectacular $376,264 at three U.S. theaters.  Neon opened “Parasite” at The Landmark and Arclight Hollywood in Los Angeles and at the IFC Center in New York, where it broke the opening record set by 2014’s “Boyhood.” Its per-screen average of [...]

  • Joker Movie

    'Joker' Dominates International Box Office With $124 Million

    “Joker” is showing impressive traction internationally with a second weekend of $123.7 million on 24,149 screens in 79 markets — a holdover decline of just 29%. Joaquin Phoenix’s psychological thriller has totaled $351.2 million outside North America after only 12 days in release. And with $192 million in domestic grosses, “Joker” has now topped $543 [...]

  • Joker

    'Joker' Remains Box Office Ruler With $55 Million

    Joaquin Phoenix is king of the North American box office once again as “Joker” scores an easy victory in its second weekend with $55 million at 4,374 sites. “Joker” dominated a trio of new entries with animated comedy “The Addams Family” leading the rest of pack with $30.3 million at 4,007 venues, topping forecasts. Will [...]

  • French director Bertrand Tavernier attends the

    Bertrand Tavernier on Coppola, Scorsese, Cayatte, Cinema’s Bright Future

    Veteran French director Bertrand Tavernier (“Round Midnight”) – president and director of the Institut Lumière and Lumière Festival, which he co-manages with Cannes’ Thierry Frémaux – has played a pivotal role in restoring classic French films and defending the importance of French directors, such as Claude Autant Lara, Henri Decoin and André Cayatte, who were [...]

  • 'Philharmonia'

    French Series 'Philharmonia' Sells to the U.K., the U.S. and Australia (EXCLUSIVE)

    “Philharmonia,” a French thriller series set in the world of a national orchestra, has been acquired in English-speaking territories from Lagardere Studios Distribution. “Philharmonia,” which was created and co-written by Marine Gacem, has been acquired by First Look Media’s Topic for SVOD rights in the U.S., and Walter Presents for the U.K. and Australia. “Philharmonia” [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content