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Sideways bags 7 Golden Globe noms

Arthur J Pais | December 14, 2004 17:11 IST

SidewaysThe little film with a big heart, Sideways, that cost a mere $15 million got more (seven) Golden Globe nominations than the $100 million plus The Aviator (six). But, strictly speaking, the films were competing in different categories.

For the Golden Globes, given out by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, are given in three categories: dramatic films, comedies or musicals and TV films. Sideways, which has been having a decent run in art-house theaters, was the 11th top grossing film in North America and has grossed an encouraging $14 million in about a month.

Directed by Alexander Payne, whose last film About Schmidt was a modest success, Sideways is a bittersweet road comedy about two friends, one of them getting ready for his marriage.

A few hours after the Golden Globe nominations were announced, the New York Film Critics Circle named Sideways 2004's best picture. Over the weekend, the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and the New York Film Critics Online had also called it the year's best.

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The Golden Globes will be announced January 16 in a widely seen NBC broadcast.

There were at least three artists who got more than one nomination: Jamie Fox scored a record three acting nominations: as the legendary singer and musician Ray Charles in the hit film Ray; for delicately showing his anxiety and fear as the kidnapped victim in the bigger hit Collateral; and for the prison drama Redemption.

Foxx is an enviable actor in Hollywood today. December 13, the day the nominations were announced, happened to be his 37th birthday.

Clint Eastwood, nominated for Million Dollar Baby as director, was also named for his musical score in the same film. His movie, which has created plenty of buzz opens in a few cities on December 15. Eastwood was also named the best director by New York critics.

Other directors nominated were Marc Forster for Finding Neverland and Mike Nichols for Closer.

Jamie Foxx in 'Collateral'Hillary Swank, whose career seemed to be nosediving over the last three years, got a big boost when Eastwood cast her in the boxing drama Million Dollar Baby. She was nominated for the film. And Swank, a previous Golden Globe winner for Boys Don't Cry (she also got an Oscar for the movie), was also nominated for TV the suffrage drama Iron Jawed Angels.

On the subject of multiple recognition, here is yet another record. All the five actors nominated in the dramatic film categories played real life characters.

Except for The Aviator, The Incredibles ($90 million) and The Phantom Of The Opera ($75 million), most nominees were made on smaller budgets ranging from $12 million to $40 million. Even the hit martial art saga Kill Bill Vol 2 was made for about $35 million. Not to forget the ironic romance The Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind that cost about $35 million; Jim Carrey, whose asking price is $25 million, cut down his fee drastically to be in the film. Already a Golden Globe winner, he copped up another nomination.

The Aviator, which tells the story of Howard Hughes, one of the richest men in the world, notorious for womanising, daredevilry and eccentricities, will release this week. Many other nominees are also awaiting their release in the next two weeks. 

In the best dramatic movie of the year the nominees are: The chilling story of sadomasochism and adultery, Closer; the poignant story of JM Barrie, Finding Neverland; Hotel Rwanda, a story of a hotel manager's personal efforts to save hundreds of lives during the genocide a decade ago; Kinsey, the biopic of sex researcher Alfred Kinsey that has angered conservatives across America, and Million Dollar Baby, the boxing saga of a determined woman who dares to make a name in the men's world.

Along with Sideways, best musical or comedy nominees are the brilliant, ironic romance Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind. Jim Carrey plays the man who wants to erase the memory of a past love, Kate Winslet, and suddenly decides against it once the process has started.

Competing with the sublime Spotless Mind is the animated smash hit The Incredibles; Ray, the dramatic screen bio of composer and singer Ray Charles; and soon to be released musical The Phantom Of The Opera, adapted from Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical that has grossed over $2 billion in the past 17 years.

In the dramatic section, the nominations include The Aviator's Leonardo DiCaprio and Finding Neverland''s Johnny Depp. Javier Bardem, who plays a paralysed man who wants the right to end his life in The Sea Inside is a big name in his native Spain. Don Cheadle, the heroic hotel manager in Hotel Rwanda, is an actor first who could well be a star someday. The other nominee Liam Neeson who played title character in Kinsey is a protean actor but has seldom proved to be a box-office draw.

Uma Thurman in Kill Bill Vol 2Dramatic lead actress nominees were Scarlett Johansson for the small A Love Song; Nicole Kidman in the supernatural Birth; Imelda Stauton as a well-meaning abortionist in Vera Drake; Hillary Swank as a boxer in Million Dollar Baby and, possibly the most deserving, Uma Thurman as an avenging angel in Kill Bill Vol. 2.

Along with Foxx, Sideways star Paul Giamatti was nominated for best actor in a musical or comedy for his role as a seemingly helpless man in love on a road trip with his soon-to-be married buddy.

The other contenders: Carrey in Spotless Mind; Kevin Kline as composer Cole Porter in the also-ran film De-Lovely; and Kevin Spacey as singer Bobby Darin in Beyond The Sea, a film Spacey also directed.

Musical or comedy actress nominees included Annette Benning as a possessive London stage diva in the little seen Being Julia; Ashley Judd as composer Porter's wife in De-Lovely; and Emmy Rossum as the aspiring singer in The Phantom Of The Opera.

Kate Winslet in 'Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind'Other nominees were Kate Winslet for Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind and Renee Zellweger as the plain-looking woman looking for fresh romance in Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason.

The Zellweger movie started with big fanfare in North America but unlike abroad, where it is headed for a glorious $200 million mark, the film turned out to be a disappointment in America. It could end its run here with about $45 million, while its predecessor grossed about $60 million.

The two acting nominations for the critically drubbed story of Cole Porter film De-Lovely, which was also a box-office disappointment, surprised some. It was as if the 90-member strong association was bending backward to fill the nominations in the comedy/musical category.

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