There have been numerous examples of comedic actors who go the serious route in hopes of getting some Oscar love. Yet Melissa McCarthy nabbed her Academy nomination early on for 2011’s Bridesmaids and did so for a role that relied on laughs. The Telluride Film Festival saw the debut of Can You Ever Forgive Me? over the weekend. And it raises the possibility of another nod for the actress. The dramedy tells the true life story of Lee Israel, an author who became known more for her forgeries than literary works.
Marielle Heller directs the Fox Searchlight production and early reviews suggest it’s a winner. In addition to McCarthy getting solid notices, critics have also praised the supporting work of Richard E. Grant as her partner in crime.
The studio behind Forgive could have a difficult task getting this recognized by Oscar voters if it doesn’t break through with its star’s fan base. However, the buzz out of Colorado suggests both actors have a shot at nominations. With Grant, Supporting Actor is the only acting race in my opinion that doesn’t have a definite nominee yet. So his chances could even be better than his more well-known costar.
Bottom line: Telluride has raised the possibility of the two principal performers here making the shortlist.
Can You Ever Forgive Me? opens domestically October 19. My Oscar Watch posts will continue…