Even though it premiered at Sundance all the way back in January, Jockey is finally attempting to ride into Oscar contention. The drama from director Clint Bentley casts Clifton Collins, Jr. as an aging equestrian in the sunset of his career. After its festival bow, the pic received pleasing reviews to the tune of a 96% Rotten Tomatoes rating.
All the buzz, though its been fairly quiet for awhile, has been with Collins and a possible Best Actor nod. He’s never achieved Academy attention despite an acclaimed supporting turn in 2005’s Capote and other notable film and TV roles. Some critics certainly say he’s worthy of a nomination.
However, he looks to be a long shot. Sony Pictures Classics, which picked up distribution rights, is releasing it December 29th. The first trailer came out just today. The studio will need to mount a spirited campaign for Collins to make the final five. We can generally assume two spots are taken: Will Smith in King Richard and Benedict Cumberbatch for The Power of the Dog. There’s plenty of other viable hopefuls. It doesn’t help Collins that two of them (Andrew Garfield in Tick, Tick… Boom! and Leonardo DiCaprio in Don’t Look Up) have helped their cases in recent days. This is in addition to Denzel Washington (The Tragedy of Macbeth), Peter Dinklage (Cyrano), and more.
Bottom line: Collins needs some precursor love to show up at the Oscars. If that doesn’t happen, I don’t see him placing. My Oscar Prediction posts for the films of 2021 will continue…