Wednesday, January 25, 2012

ACCIO TRIBUTE!  For being the world's highest-grossing film franchise in history (non-adjusted for inflation, in which case it would be the James Bond films, albeit with 3x the films), the Harry Potter series sure hasn't gotten any respect from the Academy.  In sum, the eight films have received twelve nominations in total, none for acting/writing/directing, and zero wins. Alan Rickman, still, has never received an Oscar nomination in his life.

(By way of comparison, the Lord of the Rings trilogy received thirty nominations overall and won seventeen Oscars -- 4/13 for Fellowship, 2/6 on Two Towers, 11/11 for Return of the King.)

The series deserves better. Steve Kloves, J.K. Rowling, the actors, and the producing team deserve credit for an overall faithful, entertaining, family-friendly adaptation of a deservedly legendary series of books. They picked great kids a decade ago who matured into the actors they needed; the UK's finest thespians were well-used in filling out this world. When you consider how many adaptations fail to capture their source material accurately, the Harry Potter films cleared a high bar indeed.

So, with only three nominations this year, all in technical categories, what is to be done?  I think an Honorary Oscar to commemorate the overall achievement would be appropriate, except those were already given out this year. (Make an exception!) Otherwise, at a minimum, they should at least do a three-minute tribute reel, then bring out the cast and behind-the-scene team for the long standing ovation they richly deserve. This is only common sense—not magic.


  1. Adam C.1:44 PM

    <span>Alan Rickman, still, has never received an Oscar nomination in his life.</span>

    This made me think, in the Hans Gruber voice, "Mr. Rickman won't be joining us on the Oscar stage for. the rest. of. his life."

  2. sea0tter121:58 PM

    So who is the best actor/actress out there who has never received an Oscar nomination? It may well be Rickman, but I'm trying to come up with some others.

  3. Adam C.2:19 PM

    Google pointed me to this list (which was created before yesterday's Oldman nom and thus needs updating), and Rickman's at the top of it.  I think some of the others included need no comment besides "Really?" but I'd probably put Brendan Gleeson up there in the discussion of the top 5 (living, at least), and Serkis has already been discussed in these parts.

    Here's another - I'd say the ship has sailed for most of the names in that one other than Buscemi and maybe Gere (unless Sutherland is transcendent as President Snow in the Hunger Games trilogy).

  4. Jim Carrey may not be the "best" actor to never be nominated, but he's still had several roles for which he should have been -- Eternal Sunshine and Man on the Moon, especially.  But I think the most surprising one is Jennifer Jason Leigh.

  5. bill.2:53 PM

    survey topic!

  6. Aimee3:24 PM

    I don't think I knew that Rickman had never been nominated.  Why, Academy?  WHY?

  7. Watts3:28 PM

    Adam C., if I were being flip, I'd dismiss that list out of hand for its inclusion of Scarlett Johannsen.

    But to tie it in to Adam's original post - damn, there's a lot of Harry Potter people on that list too.

  8. slowlylu3:33 PM

    Rickman as an actor is a man who elevates the material that he chooses. And no I am not saying Snape wasn't a good choice for him but you scan down his credits and apart from Colonel Brandon in Sense and Sensibility, there is nothing on that list that pops as an Oscar winning role. 

    Either he doesn't get offered the parts which go to Neeson,  Gleeson, Day-Smith or Branagh, or he is not interested in hunting Oscars. 

  9. Watts3:40 PM

    If Truly, Madly, Deeply had been released 5-7 years later under Miramax, I think Weinstein could've made it happen.

    1. Slowlylu8:44 PM

      Yeah I agree with you on that assessment Watts.

  10. Early word out of Sundance is that Gere is pretty amazing in "Arbitrage," which just got picked up for a release that will give him a push next year.

  11. Carrie3:52 PM

    The Oscarless: Richard Burton, Peter O'Toole, Cary Grant, Barbara Stanwyck, James Earl Jones, Ida Lupino and Fred Astaire for starters. 

  12. Each of them was at least nominated except for Lupino, right?

  13. I, personally, am already hoping for a Harry Potter remake.  I have never liked Daniel Radcliffe as Harry.  I also think changing directors made it a very inconsistent series of movies.  And they could definitely do a LOTR and have extended versions, which would include some wonderful scenes (such as Neville at the hospital in OOTP). 

  14. Jessica8:30 PM

    There was a huuuge quality drop after Movie Three when the books outgrew an average running time. The last movie, split into the two parts, should have been awesome but Part 1 was stunted (mirroring the problems in the book). Part 2 recovered well, but given the history of the series, I'm not going to feel bad about its oscar snubs.

  15. Carrie10:12 PM

    I think Lupino may have been nommed for supporting in The Light That Failed. Too tired to look it up. 

  16. Carrie10:17 PM

    Watts:  Back in 1989 I was covering the Cannes Film Festival and wandered away from the official competition to a screening room showing Irish films. Stumbled into a movie called My Left Foot. I kind of recognized Daniel Day Lewis from his parts in My Beautiful Laundrette and Room With a View. But I was wowed. And the woman who played his mother (Brenda Belthyn), wowowow. The lights came up and there were only two other people in the room. One was Harvey Weinstein who saw me blotting my Niagara of tears. He said, "I'm going to buy this movie and Daniel Day Lewis and Brenda Blethyn are gonna get Oscars!" I rolled my eyes in the universal semaphore for "Yeah, right." Well, both of 'em won.

  17. In my fantasy world, someone will write a gripping father/son film that starts Clive Owen and Matthew Lewis, then Neville could get a nomination.