Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Wednesday Oscar Retrospective: First Five Forgotten in 2013

Welcome back to a weekly feature here at Movies with Abe, Wednesday Oscar Retrospective. The First Five Forgotten is the sixth in a series of projects looking back at the past eight years of the Oscars, or further, in the case of this specific series, not to be confused with my first series, the Forgotten Five, which looked at the five films that came closest to getting nominated for Best Picture and ended up getting shut out entirely.

With the 2013 Oscar season wrapped, it’s time to take a look back at the past two years. I’ll be spotlighting the five performers that came closest to earning their first Oscar nominations and then ended up getting snubbed, in alphabetical order. If you feel I’ve left anyone off, please say so in the comments!

First Five Forgotten in 2013

Daniel Brühl (Rush): After a breakout turn a few years earlier in the Oscar-winning “Inglourious Basterds,” German-born actor Brühl was on track to earn recognition for a knockout performance as a driven car racer in the 1970s after a Golden Globe and SAG nomination. He had two factors working against him: a film that was much more popular with European audiences, and a sterling case of category fraud (he and Chris Hemsworth were really co-leads).

Adèle Exarchupoulos (Blue is the Warmest Color): This young actress was an ideal candidate for an Oscar nomination, delivering an astonishing breakthrough turn as a high school student enamored with an older woman. The film ultimately proved far too provocative for viewers, who must have forgotten about her incredible work.

James Gandolfini (Enough Said): Gandolfini graduated from “Hey, It’s That Guy” status with a career-defining role in “The Sopranos” that netted him multiple Emmys and Golden Globes. What turned out to be his final role showcased a softer, sweeter side of him that was a big part of why this romantic comedy was a success. Unfortunately, a posthumous SAG nomination was all he got.

Michael B. Jordan (Fruitvale Station): It’s hard to ignore some knockout performances, but Oscar voters still manage to do so sometimes. That’s certainly the case with Jordan’s tour de force portrayal of a young man on the last day of his life in this Sundance smash. The familiar TV face will likely be back in the near future with something that could earn him what will then be an overdue Oscar nod.

Léa Seydoux (Blue is the Warmest Color): This French actress didn’t necessarily have as much buzz as her leading costar, but, unlike her, she did have more extensive acting experience in a number of films. Her category was much less crowded than her costar’s, but there still wasn’t room for what to most was still probably the stablest part of a wild and controversial film.

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