January 15, 2004

Another Piece of the Oscar Puzzle

The Screen Actor's Guild nominations, another step on the road to little golden man ownership, were announced today, with more than a few surprises.

In the best ensemble cast category, National Board of Review favorite Mystic River will compete against LOTR: Return of the King, In America, Seabiscuit and the surprise indie choice, The Station Agent.

Mystic River also picked up a nod in the best actor category for Sean Penn's riveting performance as a grieving, vengeful father. His competition includes Peter Dinklage for The Station Agent, Bill Murray for Lost in Translation, Johnny Depp (!) for Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl and Ben Kingsley for House of Sand of Fog.

One of PCC's new favorite actresses, Patricia Clarkson, is nominated for both best actress (The Station Agent) and best suppporting actress (Pieces of April). In the best actress category, she'll face stiff competition from another of PCC's favorite actresses, Naomi Watts, in one of PCC's favorite performances of the year, Watts' turn in 21 Grams. Also nominated are National Board of Review winner Diane Keaton for Something's Gotta Give, Evan Rachel Wood for Thirteen and Charlize Theron for Monster.

In the best supporting actress category, Clarkson will face competition from Maria Bello (The Cooler), Holly Hunter (Thirteen), Renée Zellweger (Cold Mountain) and the phenomenal Keisha Castle-Hughes in her debut film, Whale Rider.

Mystic River's Tim Robbins picked up a much-deserved best supporting actor nomination for his searing performance as a past abuse victim and struggling father. His fellow nominees include Alec Baldwin (The Cooler), Ken Watanabe (The Last Samurai), Chris Cooper (Seabiscuit) and Benicio Del Toro (21 Grams).

Notable omissions, justified or otherwise, include Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation or Girl with the Pearl Earring), Nicole Kidman and Jude Law for their performances in Cold Mountain, Jennifer Connelly and Shoreh Aghashloo (House of Sand and Fog), Tom Cruise (The Last Samurai), Ewan McGregor and Albert Finney (Big Fish), Russell Crowe (Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World) and any of our hobbit, elfish, human or wizard friends from Middle Earth.

The SAG Awards Ceremony will be broadcast from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles February 22nd at 8 pm on TNT.

Posted by jordan at January 15, 2004 11:27 AM