Oscar Watch: Spotlight

We arrive at yet another entry into the Academy Awards derby from the Venice and Telluride Film Festivals (a theme on the blog this weekend) and it’s Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight. The pic is a journalistic expose on the Catholic Church sex scandals from a few years ago and centers on the Boston Globe reporters who broke the story. After its festival rollout, some critics have compared it to All the President’s Men. High praise indeed.

Spotlight boasts a truly impressive ensemble that includes Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Stanley Tucci and Liev Schreiber. Early reviews suggest it could be a contender in Best Picture, though I didn’t include it in my initial round of predictions from yesterday. It’s certainly one to keep an eye on though when it debuts November 6. It also doesn’t hurt that director McCarthy is well liked in the critical community with indie darlings like The Station Agent and The Visitor to his credit.

As for acting races, most write ups have focused on Michael Keaton and it’s certainly possible he could find himself as a player in Supporting Actor. This may hold especially true considering he had a remarkable comeback role in last year’s Picture winner Birdman. He was nominated for Best Actor, but lost out to Eddie Redmayne for The Theory of Everything. The other performers are unlikely to receive much attention.

Once again, as with Steve Jobs and The Danish Girl and Beasts of No Nation, the festival circuit has shined Oscar attention on another picture. As of this weekend, it’s Spotlight.

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