“The Power of the Dog”, by Jane Campion, today became the big favorite for the Oscars by accumulating twelve nominations in an edition with a strong Latin presence, thanks to nominations such as those of the Spanish Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem, the Puerto Rican Lin-Manuel Miranda, the Colombian Sebastián Yatra or the animated film “Encanto”.
The Hollywood Academy announced on Tuesday its candidates for the most prestigious film awards, which will be presented on March 27 in Los Angeles, a list headed by “The Power of the Dog” followed by “Dune” with ten nominations, “Belfast ” and “West Side Story” with seven each and “King Richard” with six.
“THE POWER OF THE DOG”, A ‘WESTERN’ STRAIGHT TO THE OSCAR
The drama directed by filmmaker Jane Campion appears in practically all the star categories, such as best picture, direction, cinematography, soundtrack, and, of course, male performance for its protagonist, Benedict Cumberbatch. As well as Jesse Plemons and Kodi Smit-McPhee, for their supporting roles.
The New Zealander Campion, who in 1994 became the second female candidate for best direction in the history of the awards for “The Piano”, has all the ballots to win the double statuette: film and direction.
“The Power of the Dog”, a ‘western’ set in the United States of the early twentieth century that explores alcoholism, toxic masculinity, and homophobia, arrives at the Oscars with an outstanding crop of awards handed out by critical associations, festivals, and unions.
If it finally wins the award for best film, Netflix, the platform that hosts the production, would get the long-awaited Oscar that escaped with “Roma”, “The Irishman” and “Mank” in previous years.
As main opponents will be “Dune”, “Belfast” and “West Side Story”, the next favorite films by a number of nominations, which also aspire to recognition for best film.
Another of the, a priori, critical favorites, “Licorice Pizza” was left off the hook by gathering only three nominations, although the history of the Oscars confirms that the awards do not always go to the most nominated film.
The rest of the contenders for best film are “Coda”, “Don’t Look Up”, “King Richard”, “Nightmare Alley” and the Japanese “Drive My Car” which, like “Parasite” did in 2020, will compete in both the category of best overall film as well as in the foreign section.
WITHOUT HISPANICS FOR BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM
There will be no Hispanic presence in best international film, which leaves a historic first nomination for Bhutan, for “Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom”, and splits between “Flee” (Denmark), “The Hand of God” (Italy) and ” The Worst Person in the World” (Norway) the rest of the ratings.
Neither the Spanish “El Buen Patron” by Fernando León de Aranoa, nor the Mexican “Noche de Fuego” by Tatiana Huezo, nor the Panamanian “Plaza Catedral” by Abner Benaim, which made the first cut and were among the fifteen semi-finalists, were selected by the almost 10,000 voters that make up the Hollywood Academy.
But Hispanics will be at the gala in other categories: the film “Encanto”, set in Colombia, is nominated for best-animated film and best soundtrack, and its song “Dos Oruguitas”, with Puerto Rican Lin-Manuel Miranda and Colombian Sebastián Yatra, compete for the Oscar for best song.
There will also be the American of Latin origin Ariana DeBose, for her secondary role in “West Side Story”.
SPAIN AT THE OSCARS: JAVIER BARDEM, PENÉLOPE CRUZ and ALBERTO IGLESIAS
Despite the fact that the feature film selected by the Spanish Film Academy has been left out of the race for the Oscar, Spain will have a very prominent presence.
Javier Bardem, who also stars in “El Buen Patron”, will be a candidate for best actor for “Being the Ricardos”, in which he plays Desi Arnaz, a Cuban who starred alongside actress Lucille Ball in one of the most-watched series on the American history, “I love Lucy”.
The popularity of the series and the applause that his co-star, Nicole Kidman, has received, will help the Spaniard in a category that has two heavyweights, Benedict Cumberbatch (“The power of the dog”) and Will Smith, who has achieved the best reviews of his career for “King Richard”, as well as Andrew Garfield, for “tick, tick…BOOM!”, and Denzel Washington, for “The Tragedy of Macbeth”.
Bardem, who already has a golden statuette for “No Country for Old Men” ( 2008) and two nominations for “Before Night Falls” (2001) and “Biutiful” (2011), will attend the ceremony with Penelope Cruz, nominated for ” Parallel Mothers”, by Pedro Almodóvar.
It is the fourth Oscar nomination for the Spanish actress, who won it in 2009 for “Vicky Cristina Barcelona ” and has already aspired to the award for work in Spanish with “Volver” (2007), to which her candidacy for “Nine” was added. (2010).
Cruz, who began to gain recognition for this work when he won the Volpi Cup at the Venice Film Festival, shares a candidacy with favorites such as Kristen Stewart (“Spencer”) and Nicole Kidman (“Being the Ricardos”), as well as Olivia Colman (” The Lost Daughter”) and Jessica Chastain (“The eyes of Tammy Faye”), in a section that left out Lady Gaga (“House of Gucci”).
Almodóvar will also not compete for best direction and best original screenplay, although his friend and collaborator, Alberto Iglesias, will fight for the award for best soundtrack for “Madres parallels”, which is his fourth nomination after those achieved by “The Constant Gardener”. “, “The Kite Runner” and “The Mole”.
There is also another Spaniard, Alberto Mielgo, who aspires to the statuette for best animated short for “The Windshield Wiper”, in a category in which the Chilean Hugo Covarrubias also competes, for “Bestia”.