Oscars 2021: The Case of Paul Thomas Anderson

Now that I’ve completed by Case Of posts for the 10 Best Picture contenders, I’m moving on to the 25 hopefuls for Best Director, Actress, Actor, Supporting Actress, and Supporting Actor. I’ll alternate alphabetically among the categories between them and that means Paul Thomas Anderson’s behind the camera work for Licorice Pizza is first up!

The Case for Paul Thomas Anderson:

Prior to Pizza being delivered in 2021, PTA as he’s called had already received 8 nominations from the Academy between his producing, directing, and writing. He’s 0 for 8. He has three more at bats with his 70s set coming-of-age tale in Picture, Director, and Original Screenplay. In other words, there could be an overdue factor at play.

The Case Against Paul Thomas Anderson:

Licorice Pizza tied CODA with the fewest amount of nods for the BP nominees. Unlike his previous BP contenders There Will Be Blood and Phantom Thread, there were no acting nominations for his ensemble. And there’s simply the fact that Jane Campion (The Power of the Dog) is the major frontrunner.

Previous Nominations: 2 (for directing only)

There Will Be Blood (2007); Phantom Thread (2017)

The Verdict:

There’s a decent chance that PTA’s zero wins streak will be broken at the ceremony, but it would come in Original Screenplay (where it appears to be down to Pizza or Belfast). It will not be broken here.

My Case Of posts will continue with Jessica Chastain in The Eyes of Tammy Faye

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