Following my coverage of 2011 Guild Award nominees, here are this year’s Producers Guild of America (PGA) film nominations. Guild Awards herald what’s ahead at the Academy Awards and winners often take the Oscar for Best Picture.
Since the PGA Awards began in 1990, winners have always been a Best Picture Oscar nominee. The only films to win the PGA award, but not Best Picture Oscars were “The Crying Game”, “Apollo 13”, “Saving Private Ryan”, “Moulin Rouge”, “The Lord of the Rings”, “The Aviator”, “Brokeback Mountain” and “Little Miss Sunshine.”
The Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures
And the 2011 nominees are…
With a 2008 Award for “Slumdog Millionaire”, producers Christian Colson and Danny Boyle are up for “127 Hours.” Boyle directed the gripping true tale of Aron Ralston, but didn’t get a Director’s Guild (DGA) nomination. Boyle did get a Writers Guild (WGA) nomination for adapting Ralston’s book with collaborator Simon Beaufoy.
Darren Aronofsky on the other hand did get nominated for the DGA award for “Black Swan.” Producers Scott Franklin, Mike Medavoy and Brian Oliver are in the running for the PGA Award. “Black Swan” has been nominated for just about every Guild award including director (DGA), writer (WGA), cinematographer (ASC), art director or production design (ADG) and screen actors (SAG). Natalie Portman picked up a Golden Globe Best Actress .
Christopher Nolan and his wife Emma Thomas finally have a shot at nabbing the Producers Guild Award for “Inception.” Thomas produced all of Nolan’s films including “Momento”, “The Prestige” and “The Dark Knight.” Nolan is up for the DGA award and WGA award for original screenplay, with an ASC award nomination as well.
Actor Mark Wahlberg’s intimate production involvement in “The Fighter” stemmed from a close friendship with subject Micky Ward, additional to starring as Ward. His dedicated passion garnered a production credit, joining David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman in a PGA award nomination. It’s nominated for the DGA award, WGA award, SAG awards, ADG award and Christian Bale won the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor.
One big contender turning out surprises is “The Kids Are All Right.” The film won the Golden Globe for Best Comedy and Annette Bening won Best Actress. It also has SAG and WGA award nominations, but we’ll see how it fares for producers Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray.
Another film that rolled out big in 2010 was “The King’s Speech.” Producers Lain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin are up for the PGA award and also DGA award, ASC award, SAG awards and ADG awards. Colin Firth stuttered his way to a Golden Globe for Best Actor and my money’s on him for the Oscar.
“The Social Network” producer Scott Rudin has two nominations in 2010. This is not all that strange for the prolifically successful Rudin, who produced 2 films up for Best Picture in 2008: “No Country for Old Men” and “There Will Be Blood”, winning the PGA award with the Coen Brothers for “No Country…” With “The Social Network” he joins producers Dana Brunetti, Ceán Chaffin and Michael De Luca. It won Best Picture, Best Director and Best Screenplay at the Golden Globes and is nominated for the DGA, ASC, WGA and SAG awards.
Scott Rudin’s other PGA nomination comes with none other than the Coen Brothers again with “True Grit.” The film is also up for the ASC award, WGA award for adapted screenplay, ADG award for period film and SAG awards. Rudin is also being honored by the PGA with the 2011 David O. Selznick Achievement Award.
Surprisingly “The Town” is up for the 2010 PGA award with nominees Basil Iwanyk and Graham King. Though, “The Town” also garnered nominations for WGA adapted screenplay, ADG award for contemporary film and SAG awards. Graham King also won the 2004 PGA award with Michael Mann for Scorsese’s “The Aviator.”
“Toy Story 3” might keep animation going for a streak at the Oscars for Best Picture. Last year “Up” was nominated and “Toy Story 3” got a PGA nomination for both Theatrical Motion Picture and Animated Theatrical Motion Picture. It’s up against “Despicable Me” and “How to Train Your Dragon” in the animation category.
Films nominated for the PGA award in the Documentary category are, “Client 9”, “Earth Made of Glass”, “Inside Job”, “Smash His Camera”, “The Tillman Story” and “Waiting for Superman.”