Wednesday, April 29, 2020

First 2020 Emmy Nomination Predictions: Best Supporting Actress in a TV Movie/Limited Series

First 2020 Emmy Predictions
Rose Byrne "Mrs. America"
Toni Collette "Unbelievable"
Allison Janney "Bad Education"
Margo Martindale "Mrs. America"
Sarah Paulson "Mrs. America"
Jean Smart "Watchmen"

Other Contenders - Uzo Aduba "Mrs. America", Tracey Ullman "Mrs. America", Melissa Leo "I Know This Much is True", Kathryn Hahn "I Know This Much Is True", Cherry Jones "Defending Jacob", Emma Thompson "Years and Years", Patti LuPone "Hollywood", Holland Taylor "Hollywood", Naomi Watts "The Loudest Voice", Amandla Stenberg "The Eddy", Joanna Kulig "The Eddy", Winona Ryder "The Plot Against America", Zoe Kazan "The Plot Against America", Jane Krakowski "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt", Carol Kane "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt", Rosemarie DeWitt "Little Fires Everywhere", Sienna Miller "Little Fires Everywhere", Viola Davis "Troop Zero", Allison Janney "Troop Zero", Casey Wilson "Mrs. Fletcher"

Commentary - How big will Mrs. America be? Will it pull a When They See Us and just crash the party here. Right now I am picking three big Emmy favorites to get in: Rose Byrne, Margo Martindale, and Sarah Paulson. But what about Uzo Aduba? Should I make room for her? I am thinking that I need to, but who do I leave off? I feel comfortable about Jean Smart making it in, and with so many Mrs. America actresses, she is probably our front runner to win. Allison Janney is always a threat, and is getting great reviews for Bad Education. Finally, Netflix is going to be pushing Unbelievable, and Toni Collette is a favorite. But I would be on the lookout for Tracey Ullman, Melissa Leo, Kathryn Hahn, Cherry Jones and Emma Thompson, all of whom are either Emmy nominees or winners in great roles. Hollywood is getting a lot of mixed reviews, but will get a huge push, so watch out for Patti LuPone and Holland Taylor, two living legends. On the flip side, The Eddy, from Oscar winner Damien Chazelle is getting good reviews for Netflix, and has two movie stars, Joanna Kulig and Amandla Stenberg in this category. Winona Ryder and Zoe Kazan should definitely be in the mix for The Plot Against America, but David Simon seems to always be off their radar. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has its two favorites, and Little Fires Everywhere and Troop Zero have big names on the list.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Academy Makes Rule Changes for 93rd Oscars

So the biggest changes: 1) Streaming allowed for this year due to coronavirus, and 2) They are going back to one sound category that rewards both mixers and editors. This one we knew was coming, was recommended by those branches.

Full Press Release, can also be found at:

"The devastating COVID-19 pandemic forced the closure of all Los Angeles County movie theaters as of Monday, March 16, 2020.  Current Academy Awards rules (under Rule Two, Eligibility) require that a film be shown in a commercial motion picture theater in Los Angeles County for a theatrical qualifying run of at least seven consecutive days, during which period screenings must occur at least three times daily.  Until further notice, and for the 93rd Awards year only, films that had a previously planned theatrical release but are initially made available on a commercial streaming or VOD service may qualify in the Best Picture, general entry and specialty categories for the 93rd Academy Awards under these provisions:

The film must be made available on the secure Academy Screening Room member-only streaming site within 60 days of the film’s streaming or VOD release;
The film must meet all other eligibility requirements.
On a date to be determined by the Academy, and when theaters reopen in accordance with federal, state and local specified guidelines and criteria, this rules exemption will no longer apply.  All films released thereafter will be expected to comply with the standard Academy theatrical qualifying requirements.

“The Academy firmly believes there is no greater way to experience the magic of movies than to see them in a theater.  Our commitment to that is unchanged and unwavering.  Nonetheless, the historically tragic COVID-19 pandemic necessitates this temporary exception to our awards eligibility rules.  The Academy supports our members and colleagues during this time of uncertainty.  We recognize the importance of their work being seen and also celebrated, especially now, when audiences appreciate movies more than ever,” said Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson.

For films to more easily meet theatrical exhibition requirements when theaters reopen, the Academy also will expand the number of qualifying theaters beyond Los Angeles County to include venues in additional U.S. metropolitan areas: the City of New York; the Bay Area; Chicago, Illinois; Miami, Florida; and Atlanta, Georgia.  The Awards and Events Committee will evaluate all matters of rules and eligibility.

Film festivals that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic may provide films online through either a transactional pay wall or password-protected entry, which will not affect the films’ eligibility for future Academy Awards qualification.  The Academy will allow an exemption for those films that are released online through an impacted festival’s online platform, provided that proof of inclusion in the festival is submitted.  With these provisions, films will be expected to comply with all other eligibility requirements for the 93rd Academy Awards.

The Board of Governors also announced rules changes in the Sound, Music and International Feature Film categories.

The two Sound categories, Sound Mixing and Sound Editing, have been combined into one award for best achievement in Sound that emphasizes the team effort.  The number of Oscar® statuettes remains the same; up to six statuettes may be awarded.  Eligible recipients may include one production sound mixer, two supervising sound editors and three rerecording mixers.

In the Music (Original Score) category, for a score to be eligible, it must comprise a minimum of 60% original music.  Additionally, for sequels and franchise films, a score must have a minimum of 80% new music.

In a procedural change in the International Feature Film category, all eligible Academy members will now be invited to participate in the preliminary round of voting.  For the first time, film submissions will be made available through the Academy Screening Room streaming platform to those members who opt-in.  These members of the International Feature Film Preliminary Voting committee must meet a minimum viewing requirement in order to be eligible to vote in the category.
The following campaign regulations were also approved:

The regulation prohibiting quotes or comments by Academy members not directly associated with the film in any form of advertising in any medium, including online and social media, was eliminated.  Academy governors and Awards and Events Committee members, however, are still prohibited from participating in such activity.

All screeners will be required to include closed captioning.

After nominations, film companies will be allowed to send mailings announcing the availability of song and bake-off materials on the Academy’s streaming platform.

As part of the Academy’s sustainability effort, the 93rd Awards season will be the final year DVD screeners will be allowed to be distributed; these mailings will be discontinued starting in 2021 for the 94th Academy Awards.  Access to the Academy Screening Room will continue to be made available for all eligible releases.  The distribution of physical music CDs, screenplays and hardcopy mailings, including but not limited to paper invites and screening schedules, will also be discontinued next year.  Digital links to materials will be permitted.
Due to the shifting landscape surrounding the global pandemic caused by COVID-19, all matters of rules and eligibility for the 93rd Academy Awards are subject to change based on national guidelines, state-mandated government orders and Academy-determined best practices.

Additional adjustments to Academy rules, eligibility requirements and scheduling may be required.  As previously announced, the 93rd Oscars telecast is scheduled to air Sunday, February 28, 2021, on ABC.  Any updated information about the show will be shared at a later time.

For the complete 93rd Academy Awards rules, visit"

First 2020 Emmy Nomination Predictions: Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

First 2020 Predictions
Alan Arkin "The Kominsky Method"
Sterling K. Brown "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"
Dan Levy "Schitt's Creek"
John Malkovich "Space Force"
Tony Shalhoub "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"
Kenan Thompson "Saturday Night Live"

Other Contenders - Michael Zegan "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel", Leroy McLain "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel", Sean Hayes "Will & Grace", Louie Anderson "Baskets", Chris Elliott "Schitt's Creek", Noah Reid "Schitt's Creek", Ty Burrell "Modern Family", Eric Stonestreet "Modern Family", Ed O'Neill "Modern Family", Jesse Tyler Ferguson "Modern Family", William Jackson Harper "The Good Place", Manny Jacinto "The Good Place", Josh Gad "Avenue 5", Zach Woods "Avenue 5", Andre Braugher "Brooklyn Nine-Nine", Terry Crews "Brooklyn Nine-Nine", Joe Lo Truglio "Brooklyn Nine-Nine", Mahershala Ali "Ramy", Alec Baldwin "Saturday Night Live", Mikey Day "Saturday Night Live", Pete Davidson "Saturday Night Live", Beck Bennett "Saturday Night Live", Chris Redd "Saturday Night Live", Kyle Mooney "Saturday Night Live", Colton Dunn "Superstore", Nico Santos "Superstore", Mark McKinney "Superstore", Marc Maron "GLOW", Ted Danson "Curb Your Enthusiasm", J.B. Smoove "Curb Your Enthusiasm", Laurence Fishburne "black-ish", John Goodman "The Righteous Gemstones", Walton Goggins "The Righteous Gemstones", Paul Reiser "The Kominsky Method", Alex Newell "Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist", Peter Gallagher "Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist", Ben Schwartz "Space Force", Jay Ellis "Insecure", Martin Sheen "Grace & Frankie", Sam Waterston "Grace & Frankie"

Commentary - Will three Maisel guys make it in? They could, which complicates Tony Shalhoub's winning streak, the addition of Emmy favorite Sterling K. Brown does enough, with his name surely to be named in the nominees. I think Dan Levy is a huge threat. He has had a ton of press, recently inked a huge production deal, will ride the Schitt's Creek wave, and gives an incredibly funny performance. Alan Arkin will surely make the race, and while he took a break, the weak year might lead to Kenan Thompson sneaking back in, but I think that prediction will soon change. Finally, I am taking a leap of faith with Space Force, and including John Malkovich, a three time Emmy nominee, in the mix. So who could replace these guys? Look for Zegan or McLain if Maisel sweeps, previous winners and nominees like Louie Anderson, Sean Hayes, Eric Stonestreet, Ty Burrell, Ed O'Neill, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Andre Braugher, Ted Danson, John Goodman, Laurence Fishburne, Martin Sheen, Sam Waterston, and Walton Goggins. Finally, there are some deep casts like The Good Place, Superstore, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist, Saturday Night Live, Avenue 5, and Schitt's Creet. You never know when one of those guys is going to pop for voters.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

First 2020 Emmy Nomination Predictions: Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

First 2020 Nomination Predictions
Alex Borstein "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"
Marin Hinkle "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"
Lisa Kudrow "Space Force"
Jane Lynch "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"
Kate McKinnon "Saturday Night Live"
Annie Murphy "Schitt's Creek"

Other Contenders - Betty Gilpin "GLOW", D'Arcy Carden "The Good Place", Rita Moreno "One Day at a Time", Molly Shannon "The Other Two", Megan Mullaly "Will & Grace", Laurie Metcalf "The Conners", Emily Hampshire "Schitt's Creek", Jennifer Robertson "Schitt's Creek", Sarah Levy "Schitt's Creek", Karen Robinson "Schitt's Creek", Lauren Graham "Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist", Yvonne Orji "Insecure", Natasha Rothwell "Insecure", Aidy Bryant "Saturday Night Live", Cecily Strong "Saturday Night Live", Heidi Gardner "Saturday Night Live", Melissa Villasenor "Saturday Night Live", Jameela Jamil "The Good Place", Lauren Ash "Superstore", Stephanie Beatriz "Brooklyn Nine-Nine", Melissa Fumero "Brooklyn Nine-Nine", Jenifer Lewis "black-ish", Marsai Martin "black-ish", Julie Bowen "Modern Family", Sofia Vergara "Modern Family", Sarah Hyland "Modern Family", Jessica Lange "The Politician", Susie Essman "Curb Your Enthusiasm", Gillian Anderson "Sex Education", Casey Wilson "Black Monday", Regina Hall "Black Monday", Annie Potts "Young Sheldon", Tina Fey "Modern Love", Anne Hathaway "Modern Love", Catherine Keener "Modern Love", Celia Imrie "Better Things", Mikey Madison "Better Things", Miriam Shor "Younger", Hillary Duff "Younger", Debi Mazar "Younger", Jamie Pressley "Mom"

Commentary - Let's hope Emmy season can still get underway this Fall, as we hopefully begin to return to some sort of normalcy. This race is missing Colman, Clifford, Goldberg, and Chlumsky from last year, and I think that Betty Gilpin finally drops out as newer shows and buzzier shows move into the spotlight. I definitely think Borstein and Hinkle will return, and I would definitely also bet on Jane Lynch, who has already won an Emmy for this role in the Guest category. That means three nods in this category for Maisel. This usually spells doom for actresses as there is too much vote splitting. You can win with a co-star, but it is really hard to win with two or more in the same category. That could lead to fan favorite Annie Murphy winning on her first nod for Schitt's Creek, which has gone from Emmy underdog, to one of the biggest contenders this year for its excellent final season. This could also benefit Kate McKinnon, who won this category several times. I would also be on the lookout for Space Force. It has all the makings of an Emmy contender, and Lisa Kudrow is an Emmy-winning favorite. Beyond those six, there is, of course, Gilpin, who could easily take a slot from one of the six mentioned. D'Arcy Carden was so strong last year, but missed out. In a weaker race, and the show's final season, she could finally get a well-overdue nod. There are previous winners like Megan Mullaly and Laurie Metcalf, who could pop in a weaker year. The once dominant Modern Family cast, particularly Bowen and Vergara could return for a solid final season. Once again a weaker year helps familiar names on the ballot. Then there are the multiple cast members from shows like Saturday Night Live, Insecure, Schitt's Creek, Superstore, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Modern Love, Younger, Mom Better Things, black-ish, Black Monday, and some stand alone favorites like Gillian Anderson and Jessica Lange.

The Oscar Narrative: First 2021 Oscar Nomination Predictions - Best Supporting Actress

First 2021 Predictions
Abigail Breslin "Stillwater"
Glenn Close "Hillbilly Elegy"
Olivia Colman "The Father"
Saoirse Ronan "Ammonite"
Meryl Streep "The Prom"

Other Contenders - Nicole Kidman "The Prom", Amy Adams "Hillbilly Elegy", Amanda Seyfried "Mank", Jayne Houdyshell "The Humans", Ariana De Bose "West Side Story", Rita Moreno "West Side Story", Julianne Nicholson "Blonde", Jodie Comer "The Last Duel", Rashida Jones "On the Rocks", Yuh-Jung Youn "Minari", Viola Davis "Untitled Sandra Bullock/Nora Fingscheidt Project", Cate Blanchett "Nightmare Alley", Toni Collette "Nightmare Alley", Rooney Mara "Nightmare Alley", Toni Collette "I'm Thinking of Ending Things", Claire Foy "Louis Wain", Andrea Risenborough "Louis Wain", Gaby Hoffman "C'Mon, C'Mon", Mary J. Blige "Respect", Audra McDonald "Respect", Awkafina "Breaking News in Yuba County", Regina Hall "Breaking News in Yuba County", Juliette Lewis "Breaking News in Yuba County", Allison Janney "Breaking News in Yuba County", Alicia Vikander "Green Knight", Charlotte Rampling "Dune", Rebecca Ferguson "Dune", Zendaya "Dune", Elisabeth Moss "The French Dispatch", Frances McDormand  "The French Dispatch", Tilda Swinton  "The French Dispatch", Lea Seydoux  "The French Dispatch", Elizabeth Debicki "Tenet", Marion Cotillard "Annette", Ruth Negga "Passing", Debra Winger "Kajillionaire", Pamela Adlon "The King of Staten Island", Marisa Tomei "The King of Staten Island", Florence Pugh "Black Widow", Gong Li "Mulan", Kristen Wiig "Wonder Woman 1984", Mare Winningham "News of the World"

Commentary - Once again, I feel the need to note that all of this could change if movie theaters don't open back up soon. But we have to press on. My top five are all Oscar favorites with baity projects. I always put Meryl Streep in there, this time for the adaptation of the Tony-nominated musical The Prom, from Netflix. Glenn Close is coming back for more with Hillbilly Elegy, will have Netflix backing her campaign, but could still end up going against Olivia Colman, for her work in The Father opposite Anthony Hopkins. Saoirse Ronan is coming in strong for yet another nomination. Will her or Close finally win? Finally, Tom McCarthy is writing what looks to be a great role for Abigail Breslin, who could earn her second nomination. Beyond those five, the plethora of previous winners is astounding: Nicole Kidman, Rita Moreno, Viola Davis, Cate Blanchett, Allison Janney, Alicia Vikander, Frances McDormand, Marion Cotillard, Tilda Swinton, and Marisa Tomei. Then let's add in the previous nominees like Amy Adams, Debra Winger, Toni Collette, Juliette Lewis, Mary J. Blige, Charlotte Rampling, Ruth Negga, Kristen Wiig, and Florence Pugh. Then newcomers and beloved veterans all looking for their first nod: Julianne Nicholson, Jayne Houdyshell, Jodie Comer, Gaby Hoffman, Rashida Jones, Gong Li, Mare Winningham, Zendaya, Rebecca Ferguson, Awkwafina, Claire Foy, Andrea Risenborough, Yuh-Jung Youn, Audra McDonald, and Lea Seydoux. It's going to be a great race to watch.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

65th Annual Drama Desk Award Nominations

Outstanding Play
Cambodian Rock Band, by Lauren Yee, Signature Theatre
Greater Clements, by Samuel D. Hunter, Lincoln Center Theater
Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven, by Stephen Adly Guirgis, Atlantic Theater Company/LAByrinth Theater Company
Heroes of the Fourth Turning, by Will Arbery, Playwrights Horizons
The Inheritance, by Matthew Lopez

Outstanding Musical
Octet, Signature Theatre
The Secret Life of Bees, Atlantic Theater Company
Soft Power, The Public Theater
A Strange Loop, Playwrights Horizons/Page 73 Productions
The Wrong Man, MCC Theater

Outstanding Revival of a Play
Fefu and Her Friends, Theatre for a New Audience
for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf, The Public Theater
Mac Beth, Red Bull Theater/Hunter Theater Project
Much Ado About Nothing, The Public Theater
A Soldier’s Play, Roundabout Theatre Company

Outstanding Revival of a Musical
Little Shop of Horrors
The Unsinkable Molly Brown, Transport Group
West Side Story

Outstanding Actor in a Play
Charles Busch, The Confession of Lily Dare
Edmund Donovan, Greater Clements
Raúl Esparza, Seared
Francis Jue, Cambodian Rock Band
Triney Sandoval, 72 Miles to Go…
Kyle Soller, The Inheritance

Outstanding Actress in a Play
Rose Byrne, Medea
Liza Colón-Zayas, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
Emily Davis, Is This A Room
April Matthis, Toni Stone
Ruth Negga, Hamlet

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
David Aron Damane, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
Chris Dwan, Enter Laughing
Joshua Henry, The Wrong Man
Francis Jue, Soft Power
Larry Owens, A Strange Loop

Outstanding Actress in a Musical
Tammy Blanchard, Little Shop of Horrors
Beth Malone, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
Saycon Sengbloh, The Secret Life of Bees
Elizabeth Stanley, Jagged Little Pill
Adrienne Warren, Tina: The Tina Turner Musical

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Victor Almanzar, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
Esteban Andres Cruz, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
David Alan Grier, A Soldier’s Play
Paul Hilton, The Inheritance
Chris Perfetti, Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Patrice Johnson Chevannes, runboyrun & In Old Age
Kristina Poe, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
Belange Rodríguez, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
Elizabeth Rodriguez, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
Lois Smith, The Inheritance

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
George Abud, Emojiland
Christian Borle, Little Shop of Horrors
Jay Armstrong Johnson, Scotland, PA
Conrad Ricamora, Soft Power
Ryan Vasquez, The Wrong Man

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Yesenia Ayala, West Side Story
Paula Leggett Chase, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
LaChanze, The Secret Life of Bees
Alyse Alan Louis, Soft Power
Lauren Patten, Jagged Little Pill

Outstanding Director of a Play
Jessica Blank, Coal Country
Stephen Daldry, The Inheritance
John Ortiz, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
Tina Satter, Is This A Room
Erica Schmidt, Mac Beth

Outstanding Director of a Musical
Stephen Brackett, A Strange Loop
Thomas Kail, The Wrong Man
Kathleen Marshall, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
Leigh Silverman, Soft Power
Annie Tippe, Octet

Outstanding Choreography
Camille A. Brown, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, West Side Story
Keone Madrid and Mari Madrid, Beyond Babel
Kathleen Marshall, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
Sonya Tayeh, Moulin Rouge!
Travis Wall, The Wrong Man

Outstanding Music
Ross Golan, The Wrong Man
Michael R. Jackson, A Strange Loop
Dave Malloy, Octet
Joshua Rosenblum, Einstein’s Dreams
Duncan Sheik, The Secret Life of Bees
Jeanine Tesori, Soft Power

Outstanding Lyrics
Susan Birkenhead, The Secret Life of Bees
Adam Gwon, Scotland, PA
Michael R. Jackson, A Strange Loop
Joanne Sydney Lessner and Joshua Rosenblum, Einstein’s Dreams
Dave Malloy, Octet
Mark Saltzman, Romeo & Bernadette

Outstanding Book of a Musical
David Henry Hwang, Soft Power
Michael R. Jackson, A Strange Loop
Dave Malloy, Octet
Lynn Nottage, The Secret Life of Bees
Mark Saltzman, Romeo & Bernadette
Dick Scanlan, The Unsinkable Molly Brown

Outstanding Orchestrations
Tom Kitt, Jagged Little Pill
Alex Lacamoire, The Wrong Man
Or Matias and Dave Malloy, Octet
Danny Troob, John Clancy, and Larry Hochman, Soft Power
Jonathan Tunick, West Side Story

Outstanding Music in a Play
Steve Earle, Coal Country
Frightened Rabbit, Square Go
Jim Harbourne, Feral
Martha Redbone, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Adam Seidel, Jane Bruce, and Daniel Ocanto, Original Sound

Outstanding Scenic Design for a Play
Catherine Cornell, Mac Beth
Clint Ramos, Grand Horizons
Adam Rigg, Fefu and Her Friends
Paul Steinberg, Judgment Day
B.T. Whitehill, The Confession of Lily Dare

Outstanding Scenic Design for a Musical
Julian Crouch, Little Shop of Horrors
Anna Louizos, Scotland, PA
Derek McLane, Moulin Rouge!
Clint Ramos, Soft Power
Amy Rubin and Brittany Vasta, Octet

Outstanding Costume Design for a Play
Asa Benally, Blues for an Alabama Sky
Montana Levi Blanco, Fefu and Her Friends
Toni-Leslie James, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Antony McDonald, Judgment Day
Rachel Townsend and Jessica Jahn, The Confession of Lily Dare
Kaye Voyce, Coriolanus

Outstanding Costume Design for a Musical
Vanessa Leuck, Emojiland
Jeff Mahshie, Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice
Mark Thompson, Tina: The Tina Turner Musical
Anita Yavich, Soft Power
Catherine Zuber, Moulin Rouge!

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Play
Isabella Byrd, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Oona Curley, Dr. Ride’s American Beach House
Heather Gilbert, The Sound Inside
Mimi Jordan Sherin, Judgment Day
Yi Zhao, Greater Clements

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Musical
Betsy Adams, The Wrong Man
Jane Cox, The Secret Life of Bees
Herrick Goldman, Einstein’s Dreams
Bruno Poet, Tina: The Tina Turner Musical
Justin Townsend, Moulin Rouge!

Outstanding Projection Design
David Bengali, Einstein’s Dreams
Julia Frey, Medea
Luke Halls, West Side Story
Lisa Renkel and POSSIBLE, Emojiland
Hannah Wasileski, Fires in the Mirror

Outstanding Sound Design for a Play
Paul Arditti and Christopher Reid, The Inheritance
Justin Ellington, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Mikhail Fiksel, Dana H.
Palmer Hefferan, Fefu and Her Friends
Lee Kinney and Sanae Yamada, Is This A Room

Outstanding Sound Design for a Musical
Tom Gibbons, West Side Story
Kai Harada, Soft Power
Peter Hylenski, Moulin Rouge!
Hidenori Nakajo, Octet
Nevin Steinberg, The Wrong Man

Outstanding Wig and Hair Design
Campbell Young Associates, Tina: The Tina Turner Musical
Cookie Jordan, Fefu and Her Friends
Nikiya Mathis, STEW
Tom Watson, The Great Society
Bobbie Zlotnik, Emojiland

Outstanding Solo Performance
David Cale, We’re Only Alive for a Short Amount of Time
Kate del Castillo, the way she spoke
Laura Linney, My Name is Lucy Barton
Jacqueline Novak, Get on Your Knees
Deirdre O’Connell, Dana H.

Unique Theatrical Experience
Beyond Babel, Hideaway Circus
Feral, Tortoise in a Nutshell/Cumbernauld Theatre/59E59
Is This A Room, Vineyard Theatre
Midsummer: A Banquet, Food of Love Productions/Third Rail Projects

Outstanding Fight Choreography
Vicki Manderson, Square Go
Thomas Schall, A Soldier’s Play
UnkleDave’s Fight House, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven

Outstanding Adaptation
A Christmas Carol, by Jack Thorne
Judgment Day, by Christopher Shinn
Mojada, by Luis Alfaro
Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow, by Halley Feiffer

Outstanding Puppet Design
Raphael Mishler, Tumacho
Rockefeller Productions, Paddington Gets in a Jam
Amanda Villalobos, Is This A Room

Saturday, April 18, 2020

The Oscar Narrative: First 2021 Oscar Nomination Predictions - Best Original Screenplay

First 2021 Nomination Predictions
Matthew Billingsley, Danny Bilson, Paul De Meo, Spike Lee and Kevin Willmott "Da 5 Bloods"
Wes Anderson, Jason Schwartzman, Roman Coppola, and Hugo Guinness "The French Dispatch"
Jack Fincher "Mank"
Thomas Bidegain, Noe Debre, Marcus Hinchey, Tom McCarthy "Stillwater"
Aaron Sorkin "The Trial of the Chicago 7"

Other Contenders - Christopher Nolan "Tenet", David O. Russell "Untitled David O. Russell Project", Taylor Sheridan "Those Who Wish Me Dead", Sofia Coppola "On the Rocks", Pete Docter, Mike Jones, and Kemp Powers "Soul", Mike Mills "C'Mon, C'Mon", Krysty Wilson-Cairns and Edgar Wright "Last Night in Soho", Francis Lee "Ammonite", Lee Isaac Chung "Minari", Ron and Russell Mael "Annette", Annie Mumulo and Kristen Wiig "Barb and Star Go Vista Del Mar", Tracey Scott Wilson "Respect", Judd Apatow, Pete Davidson, and Dave Sirus "The King of Staten Island", Jon Stewart "Irresistible", Julia Hart and Jordan Horowitz "I'm Your Woman", Malcolm Campbell and Clare Dunn "Herself", Eliza Hittman "Never Rarely Sometimes Always", Miranda July "Kajillionaire", Justin Simien "Bad Hair"

Commentary - Once again we are looking at a lot of changes between now and the Fall, as there is still no timetable for movie theaters reopening. It could be an interesting Oscar season to say the least. Assuming things open up to at least some semblance of normal by the fall, I think that this race will be a fun one to watch. Aaron Sorkin returns to the race with him once again not only writing the screenplay, but also directing. The Trail of the Chicago 7 has had a hell of a time over the last couple of years getting to fruition. But it looks like it is finally hitting the big screen, and could be a huge Oscar contender. Spike Lee teams up with Neflix, only two years after BlacKkKlansman won him his first competitive Oscar. Once you get on the Academy's radar, they keep you on it. Lee could return. So could Wes Anderson, who has yet to win a screenplay Oscar, and is way overdue for one. The French Dispatch was supposed to premiere at Cannes, but I'm sure they will find it a way to put it in the Oscar race. Jack Fincher, the father of David Fincher, wrote a screenplay about the making of Citizen Kane, and his son is set to director. Expect a lot of buzz for that project. Tom McCarthy returns to the race with Stillwater, which has an Oscar vibe and a great cast. Beyond those five, there are plenty of other potentials. Tenet is set to be a huge blockbuster, but its twists and turns could be popular with writers. David O. Russell, Taylor Sheridan, Sofia Coppola, Krysty Wilson-Cairns, Annie Mumulo and Kristen Wiig, and Mike Mills, all previous screenplay nominees or winners all have big projects. Indies and blockbusters alike also populate the race including Bad Hair, The King of Staten Island, Never Rarely Sometimes Always, I'm Your Woman, Soul, Respect, Irresistible, and Minari.

Friday, April 17, 2020

2020 Lucille Lortel Award Nominations

Outstanding Play
Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Is This A Room
Mrs. Murray's Menagerie

Outstanding Musical
A Strange Loop
In The Green
Soft Power
The Secret Life of Bees

Outstanding Revival
A Bright Room Called Day
Fires in the Mirror
for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Little Shop of Horrors

Outstanding Solo Show
Bella Bella
Dana H.
the way she spoke
We're Only Alive for A Short Amount of Time
Where We Stand

Outstanding Director
Stephen Brackett, A Strange Loop
Tina Satter, Is This A Room
Danya Taymor, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Annie Tippe, Octet
Les Waters, Dana H.

Outstanding Choreographer
Camille A. Brown, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Camille A. Brown, Toni Stone
Raja Feather Kelly, A Strange Loop
Sam Pinkleton, Soft Power
Travis Wall, The Wrong Man

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play
Charles Busch, The Confession of Lily Dare
Edmund Donovan, Greater Clements
Raúl Esparza, Seared
Hamish Linklater, The Pain of My Belligerence
Aaron Yoo, The Headlands

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play
Liza Colón-Zayas, Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven
Emily Davis, Is This A Room
April Matthis, Toni Stone
Zoë Winters, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Kara Young, All the Natalie Portmans

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Christopher Borg, The Confession of Lily Dare
Marc Bovino, Mrs. Murray's Menagerie
Garcia, Continuity
Francis Jue, Cambodian Rock Band
Ken Narasaki, Greater Clements

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Okwui Okpokwasili, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Estelle Parsons, A Bright Room Called Day
Michele Pawk, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Stephanie Wright Thompson, Mrs. Murray's Menagerie
Alexandria Wailes, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical
Jonathan Groff, Little Shop of Horrors
Joshua Henry, The Wrong Man
Francis Jue, Soft Power
Larry Owens, A Strange Loop
Conrad Ricamora, Soft Power

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical
Eisa Davis, The Secret Life of Bees
LaChanze, The Secret Life of Bees
Beth Malone, The Unsinkable Molly Brown
Janelle McDermoth, We're Gonna Die
Grace McLean, In The Green

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Christian Borle, Little Shop of Horrors
Alex Gibson, Octet
Gus Halper, Sing Street
Jay Armstrong Johnson, Scotland, PA
John-Andrew Morrison, A Strange Loop

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Ashley Pérez Flanagan, In The Green
Ari Groover, Little Shop of Horrors
L Morgan Lee, A Strange Loop
Ciara Renée, The Wrong Man
Kuhoo Verma, Octet

Outstanding Scenic Design
You-Shin Chen and Laura Jellinek, Mrs. Murray's Menagerie
Yu-Hsuan Chen, Our Dear Dead Drug Lord
Tim Mackabee, Seared
James Noone, London Assurance
Clint Ramos, Soft Power

Outstanding Costume Design
Dede Ayite, BLKS
Montana Levi Blanco, A Strange Loop
Oana Botez, In The Green
Toni-Leslie James, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Rachel Townsend and Jessica Jahn, The Confession of Lily Dare

Outstanding Lighting Design
Isabella Byrd, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Alan C. Edwards, Fires in the Mirror
Tyler Micoleau, Socrates
Barbara Samuels, In The Green
Jen Schriever, Power Strip

Outstanding Sound Design
Justin Ellington, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Mikhail Fiksel, Dana H.
Lee Kinney and Sanae Yamada, Is This A Room
Hidenori Nakajo, Octet
Nicholas Pope, In The Green

Outstanding Projection Design
Stephan Mazurek, Mojada
Lisa Renkel and Possible, Emojiland the Musical
Ruey Horng Sun, The Headlands
Hannah Wasileski, Anatomy of a Suicide
Hannah Wasileski, Fires in the Mirror

Lifetime Achievement Award
Tim Sanford

Playwrights’ Sidewalk Inductee
Anna Deavere Smith

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

The Oscar Narrative: First 2021 Oscar Nomination Predictions - Best Adapted Screenplay

First 2021 Predictions
Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller "The Father"
Vanessa Taylor "Hillbilly Elegy"
Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, and Nicole Holofcener "The Last Duel"
Luke Davies "News of the World"
Chloe Zhao "Nomadland"

Other Contenders - Tony Kushner "West Side Story", Charlie Kaufman "I'm Thinking of Ending Things", Iain Morris and Taika Waititi "Next Goal Wins", Tom Hanks "Greyhound", Mark L. Smith "The Midnight Sky", Stephen Karam "The Humans", Eric Roth, Denis Villeneuve, Jon Spaihts "Dune", Matt Crowley "The Boys in the Band", Tracey Letts "The Woman in the Window", Kim Morgan and Guillermo Del Toro "Nightmare Alley", Andrew Dominik "Blonde", Quiara Alegría Hudes "In the Heights", Christopher McQuarrie "Untitled Sandra Bullock/Nora Fingscheidt Project", Simon Blackwell and Armando Iannucci "The Personal History of David Copperfield", Ruben Santiago-Hudson "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom", Chad Beguelin, Bob Martin and Jack Viertel "The Prom", Scott Beck, John Krasinski and Bryan Woods "A Quiet Place Part II", Kenya Barris, Barry W. Blaustein, David Sheffield, and Eddie Murphy "Coming 2 America", Jac Schaeffer, Ned Benson, and Eric Pearson "Black Widow", Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, Elizabeth Martin, and Lauren Hynek "Mulan", Dave Callaham, Geoff Johns, and Patty Jenkins "Wonder Woman 1984", David Lowery "The Green Knight", Dana Stevens "The Nightingale", Michael Green "Death on the Nile", Dan Gillespie Sells and Tom MacRae "Everybody's Talking About Jamie"

Commentary - So many titles right now, and this whole race could be upended the longer theaters are closed. But I wanted to start this process anyway, if for no other reason, than a sense of normalcy in a crazy world. Previous nominee Vanessa Taylor (for The Shape of Water), returns with Netflix next major Oscar prospect Hillbilly Elegy, which will give both Amy Adams and Glenn Close another chance at Oscar. Chloe Zhao's Marvel project has been pushed to next year, but Nomadland, with Frances McDormand, could be Zhao's Oscar breakthrough after her successful The Rider. Previous winners Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, team up with recent nominee, and amazing screenwriter Nicole Holofcener to tell a new story with Ridley Scott at the helm and Emmy winner Jodie Comer in the lead. It just sounds like Oscar. Previous nominee Luke Davies returns with News of the World, helmed by Paul Greengrass. Finally, I think that the adaptation of the Tony-winning play, The Father, which has already gotten great reviews, and stars Anthony Hopkins and Olivia Colman could be a huge Oscar contender across the board. Beyond those five, there are, of course, a plethora of options. Previous nominees and winners such as Tony Kushner, Taika Waititi, Charlie Kaufman, Eric Roth, Simon Blackwell and Armando Iannucci, Christopher McQuarrie, and Tom Hank, rejoin the race. Projects like Dune, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, The Humans, Everybody's Talking About Jamie, The Midnight Sky, The Boys in the Band, The Woman in the Window, The Green Knight, Blonde, Nightmare Alley, In the Heights, and The Prom all have lots of Oscar potential. Also, as always, this category is populated with a lot of big contenders, as blockbusters have done better in writing awards as of late. So look for Mulan, Coming 2 America, Wonder Woman 1984, Death on the Nile, and A Quiet Place Part II are looking to break into the race.