This week, the Oscar season officially began as Brett Haley’s “I’ll See You In My Dreams” starring Best Actress hopeful Blythe Danner landed on AMPAS’ members doorsteps. The Bleecker Street feature, which opened in May, becomes the first screener sent out for awards consideration.
At this point last year, “Snowpiercer” from the Weinstein Company/Radius TWC sent out screeners to AMPAS members, although the film resulted in zero Oscar nominations and not too many mentions during the precursors. Bleecker Street is obviously hoping for a different result.
“I’ll See You In My Dreams” was a modest hit, raking in $7.4 million. Danner, who has been a fantastic actress in the film community for decades, is no stranger to awards. The 72-year-old actress won back-to-back Emmy Awards in 2005 and 2006 for Showtime’s short-lived “Huff” in Supporting Actress (Drama). She also has a Golden Globe nomination for “Back When We Were Grownups” and was briefly in the Oscar race in 2006 for Tony Goldwyn’s “The Last Kiss.” Not to mention, she has a Tony Award on her mantle as well.
Is there room in Best Actress for a performance such as Danner? The quick answer from many tends to be “Yes” for a small film such as hers, but I look back at nominees like Demian Bichir (“A Better Life”), Catalina Sandino Moreno (“Maria Full of Grace”), or Jacki Weaver (“Animal Kingdom”) and say that its totally possible. Being the mother of Academy Award winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow, she may be able to be the same family co-campaigning duo that Bruce Dern and his daughter Laura performed just two years ago.
Bleecker Street’s plate doesn’t seem too full this year in order to secure Danner some votes. They’ll be working with “Danny Collins” with Al Pacino from earlier in the year, and likely not to get too much of their focus anyways. They also have Edward Zwick’s “Pawn Sacrifice” which will be a vehicle for Tobey Maguire, Liev Schreiber, and Peter Sarsgaard, and finally the big pony will likely be Jay Roach’s “Trumbo” with Bryan Cranston. Unknown if that film will produce a Lead Actress push for either co-stars Helen Mirren or Diane Lane, but we’ll know in a few weeks at TIFF.
She’s in the hunt. Watch out for more.
What do you think of Danner’s chances? Share in the comments.