At my house, we have a slightly different tradition. It's a game I call it "Oscar Nominee/Winner...," and it is wonderful fun and makes for its own kind of viewing pleasure. The rules of the game are simple. Make a calendar of films or TV shows featuring this year's nominees for Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Director. The films themselves must not be the "best of the best." In fact, the quirkier the film or TV show the more amusing the calendar. After compiling your list, you share it with friends, vote for which films or TV shows your will all watch, and share the experience by discussing the merits of the films/talents during an Oscar viewing party. For example, if Tom Hanks and Hilary Swank were up for Oscars this year your list might include Bachelor Party and The Next Karate Kid. In this case, you would discuss how Hanks' performance in Bachelor Party prepared him for his nominated role etc.
One might think that this tradition is merely as a way to make light of Oscar nominees, but that would be incorrect.
The thing I respect more from talent working in the industry (in front of and behind the camera) is hard work. Maybe it's the blue collar kid in me, but I really admire people who crank out the work like the studio system actors used to do. I find that Hong Kong actors and British actors often have some of the "deepest" work filmographies. I don't like pretentious actors who spend to much time talking about "craft," I prefer those who consider acting work. Some of the best performances aren't always those in important films and the ability to work hard in smaller -- less serious -- projects is a demonstration of character.
So... what are my entries in this year's calendar?
Actor "Classic Role" Jesse Eisenberg Cursed Colin Firth The Last Legion James Franco Flyboys Jeff Bridges Stick It Javier Bardem Perdita Durango
Actress "Classic Role" Natalie Portman Mars Attacks Nicole Kidman Days of Thunder Jennifer Lawrence The Bill Engvall Show Michelle Williams Halloween H20 Annette Bening The Great Outdoors
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Actor "Classic Role" Christian Bale Reign of Fire Geoffrey Rush House on Haunted Hill Jeremy Renner S.W.A.T. John Hawkes From Dusk 'Til Dawn Mark Ruffalo 54
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Actress "Classic Role" Melissa Leo Deadtime Stories Helena Bonham Carter Planet of the Apes Amy Adams Psycho Beach Party Hailee Steinfeld Back to You Jacki Weaver Cosi
Director "Classic Project" Darren Aronofsky The Fountain David Fincher Alien³ Tom Hooper The Damned United David O. Russell Spanking the Monkey Ethan Coen & Joel Coen Raising Arizona
That's my list and I think it looks entertainingly watchable. It actually has a couple of my favorite films and favorite guilty pleasures.
What's your list?