Focus Features seems to be the first studio to get their marketing efforts underway for the purpose of getting to awards voters.  Their FYC site is LIVE, showcasing their lineup that includes “Tully” from Jason Reitman, “BlackKklansman” from Spike Lee, “Boy Erased” from Joel Edgerton, “Mary Queen of Scots” from Josie Rourke, and “On the Basis of Sex” from Mimi Leder.  Their slate also includes the Mr. Rogers’ documentary “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” from Morgan Neville and “Pope Francis: A Man of His Word” from Wim Wenders, that takes a look at the iconic religious figure delivering a message of hope.

Not all the films have category placements as of yet.  Lee’s film is up and running, asking for consideration in all categories including Best Picture (Sean McKittrick, Jason Blum, Raymond Mansfield, Shaun Redick, Jordan Peele, Spike Lee), Best Director, Best Actor (John David Washington), five supporting actor hopefuls (with Adam Driver and Topher Grace getting top billing over Corey Hawkins, Jasper Paakkonen, and Harry Belafonte), Supporting Actress (Laura Harrier), and Adapted Screenplay.  The film is one of the best-reviewed films of the summer and should be able to maneuver itself through the season, even after the loud fall festivals come to an end.

The Mr. Rogers documentary is looking for consideration in the obvious Documentary Feature race but is also looking for room in Best Picture, Director, Film Editing, Cinematography, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, and Original Score.  The Critics Choice voting group, the Broadcast Film Critics Association received screeners today and it’s interesting to note that on the FYC slipcover, it omits the sound and cinematography listings.

No other film on the studio’s site has categories listed yet.

Another studio is also preparing for the big reveal and that’s Bleecker Street, who has five films to push forward this awards season.  Though no film has categories listed on their website yet, we know that they will be mounting campaigns for all of them that includes: “Colette” from Wash Westmoreland (hoping for Keira Knightley, Dominic West, and a tech embracement), “What They Had” from Elizabeth Chomko (searching for room for Hilary Swank, Robert Forster, and Blythe Danner), “Leave No Trace” from Debra Granik (hoping that the 100% RT score will propel Ben Foster in Best Actor), the documentary “McQueen,” and “Disobedience” from Sebastian Lelio (believing in the power of Rachel McAdams and Adapted Screenplay).

It’s still mighty early and we aren’t even through the first fall festival yet.  Look for these to be updated over the next few weeks.  For the new Awards Circuit readers, as a voting member of several critics groups, I have the esteemed privilege of receiving screeners from the studios, along with swag materials.  Check into the FYC Awards Season Tracker (2018-2019) any day to see what screeners are hitting doorsteps.  You can access this in the menu bar up top.

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