Colin Firth to Campaign for Lead Actor Oscar, Stanley Tucci Goes Supporting for ‘Supernova’ (EXCLUSIVE)

The campaign will follow the precedent set with past LGBTQ films like "Brokeback Mountain" and "Carol"

Courtesy of Bleecker Street

Oscar winner Colin Firth and former nominee Stanley Tucci, a pair familiar to the awards circuit, could make a splash for their work in “Supernova.” Variety has learned exclusively that Bleecker Street will campaign Firth in the lead actor category with Tucci in supporting.

The film made a strong showing at the London Film Festival in October, where it received praise from critics for the stars’ performances. Tucci has been one of Hollywood’s finest actors, winning multiple accolades over his film and television career. For his turn as the evil and child-murdering George Harvey in Peter Jackson’s “The Lovely Bones,” he received a nomination for best supporting actor, the same year in which he delivered another scene-stealing turn as Julia Child’s husband in “Julie and Julia.” His work as Tusker, a man living with dementia in “Supernova,” is tender and profoundly penetrating. As he maneuvers through a competitive race, Tucci could be one of the top candidates in a category that has typically rewarded veteran performers.

Firth has received two Oscar nominations in his career for best actor — 2010’s “A Single Man” and 2011’s “The King’s Speech,” for which he won the award while the film took home best picture. Assessing his chances in this year’s race, he may face a more difficult road than his co-star as performances from the likes of Chadwick Boseman, Anthony Hopkins and about half a dozen others are in the midst of the conversation and have generated huge buzz.

“Supernova,” tells the love story of Sam (Firth) and Tusker (Tucci), who travel across England in their old RV to visit friends, family and places from their past. Following two years since Tusker was diagnosed with dementia, the two grapple with the realization and importance of the remaining time they have together.

Two-person love stories, especially from the LGBTQ genre, often face criticism when actors are placed in separate categories. 2005’s “Brokeback Mountain” found love at the Academy with the late Heath Ledger being nominated in lead and his co-star Jake Gyllenhaal being recognized in supporting. At the Golden Globes, Gyllenhaal was deemed lead, for which he didn’t receive a nomination but ultimately was nominated in supporting at SAG and BAFTA, the latter of which he won. 2015’s “Carol” with Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara faced criticism from pundits, but the Academy nominated both for lead actress.

“Supernova” is written and directed by Harry Macqueen and is scheduled to open in theaters on Jan. 29, 2021.