Hollywood Reporter award-season analyst Scott Feinberg and L.A. Times pulse-taker Glenn Whipp have voiced highly skeptical views about Gone Girl‘s Best Picture chances. The last time I checked Scott was saying ‘no way’ and ‘not going to happen’ about Gone Girl as a Best Picture nominee…is that still true, Scott? And Glenn, of course, poured a bucket of water all over the Gone Girl bandwagon a few days ago, particularly by making “Bob’s Burgers” a rallying cry for Gone Girl pushbackers.
Here’s the gist of an email I wrote to both of them today: “I know Gone Girl can’t win but you’re still saying no nommie? Have you really removed it as one of your Gold Derby Oscar possibles, Scott? Do you really believe it’s a non-starter, Glenn?
“I don’t know how to reach out to you guys but I think you’re ratifying and re-enforcing views of the stubborn softies and foot-draggers — the older people who want ‘their’ kind of movie to be nominated. You know the kind of people I’m talking about. You guys want to be accurate but in your mind that automatically means defaulting with the lowest common denominator types. It’s a vicious cycle. Trying to be ‘right’ in your tea-leaf readings means you always dive-bomb into the same question, i.e., “what are the half-brights and the harumphs saying?”
“You can’t write off Gone Girl because the old monkeys don’t like it. It’s a hit, it’s obviously about more than just the plot, it’s about marriage and the culture and all kinds of undercurrents, and it’s a big topic with the East Coast publishing establishment. I really think it’s struck some kind of nerve, and yet you guys…c’mon. You can’t hang back with the old biddies. You’re contributing to the pushback by predicting this shit. You should man up and get ahead of the game.
“You guys need to get with the program…seriously. I’m saying this for your own good. You’re contributing to reactionary elements in the Academy by quoting them and calling their views valid. To repeat I know Gone Girl can’t win but to say no Best Picture nom at this stage strikes me as highly questionable if not deluded.”
A friend says that Gone Girl‘s box-office “is going to change minds really quickly. As Bob Dylan would say people just want to be on the side that’s winning. With the op-eds happening and the second-weekend box office, there is no more talked-about movie this year so far.”
Glenn Whipp responds: “I have no idea what Feinberg has written about Gone Girl. I went to an academy screening and reported on the reaction. Some (Hi Sasha!) believe that report was slanted. What can I say? One of the film’s awards consultants was at the screening and didn’t dispute what I wrote. Three academy members contacted me the next day, saying the story was too generous toward the way the movie played. Nobody who was there contacted me complaining otherwise.
“Does this one screening, to use your words, ‘drive a stake‘ through the movie’s chances of a best picture nomination? Of course not. And Gone Girl‘s commercial success will make it difficult for the academy to ignore it. Personally, I hope it goes far. Its success would make the next few months much more interesting.”