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Harry Potter and the Oscar Campaign ?

Could the film receive 12 (!) nominations without a mention in the best director category OR will Warner bend over backwards to secure David Yates a nod, as well ? Anyway, here is my ridiculously arguable take on how this might go down :

I firmly believe – and have been for a while now – that the last chapter of THE most succesful franchise of all time WILL get a best picture nomination...without a hitch.

David Yates did direct one of the best films of 2011 even if we still haven't seen a lot – that's why I dare to say „one of the best films of 2011” and not THE best – so that's definitely a plus, but Warner REALLY has to knock the campaign out of the park to secure him a nomination...good news that if the studio succeeds, the film will be (at least) a top5 player and not just a filler. Yates's biggest problem here, that a lot of A-listers are supposed to bring their A-games this year including Steven Spielberg, David Fincher, Stephen Daldry, Clint Eastwood, Roman Polanski, Terrence Malick, Martin Scorsese, Jason Reitman, Alexander Payne, Cameron Crowe, George Clooney, David Cronenberg etc.. The Deathly Hallows Part II has to become THE one to beat if Yates wants to knock out any of these big shots.

Steve Kloves adapted 7 of the 8 films, so I think we can say without any hesitation that he had a bigger part in making the franchise consistently acclaimed, than any of the 4 directors. Considering this is the last part and all his HP-screenplays were praised, he could/should get a only concern is the ridiculously tough competition in the category : War Horse, Carnage, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, The Descendants, A Dangerous Method, Hugo Cabret, The Ides of March, The Help, Moneyball, One Day, We bought a Zoo, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Jane Eyre, The Skin I Live in, We need to talk about Kevin, On the Road, Albert Nobbs, The Adventures of Tintin.

Daniel Radcliffe got some good ink for his performance and there is definitely that „sentimentality factor” considering he literally grew up in these films, but I still don't think he – or Watson or Grint – will be considered seriously for awards here. Maybe if the Academy REALLY goes for it...but that's a huge IF.

If the film will have an acting nomination (not that it needs it, or at least Slumdog Millionaire,and The Return of the King did just fine without it), it will be in this category. The good news that the film could pull double duty here easily, as well...Alan Rickman has a lot of love and buzz at the moment, meanwhile Ralph Fiennes has the „iconic villain” advantage and the previous nominee status. I think both could make least one of them definitely should...

Helena Bonham Carter or Maggie Smith could have the industry support to pull an 'Alan Alda', but they probably won't...needless to say that both of them delivered excellent turns even if their screentime was slightly cameoesque. Emma Watson might have a tiny shot here, as well, but she would need a huge campaign-push to register in the race and the studio might want to focus on bp-bd-bas instead of long shot-acting campaigns.

Hopefully this excellent score by Alexandre Desplat will NOT be disqualified for using parts of the original John Williams-music, because Desplat delivered wonderful original material here and I think that should be at least nominated by the Academy.

Eduardo Serra is probably getting her third nomination this year, the cinematography was epic, exactly the kind the Academy loves to nominate/award.

This one is tricky, because the films that receive nominations in this category are usually guaranteed a best picture nod, as well. Mark Day has been editing Harry Potter since the fifth film, so he might get his very first nomination for the final part. Even though the main categories are question marks , the technical ones should be an easy ride...

It might be foolish to give anything a 100% so early in the game, but I genuinely believe that there is NO way in hell, Stuart Craig – who worked on ALL HP-films and received Oscar nominations for three – could get snubbed here...actually, I think he will win.

Strangely enough, the Academy nominated only ONE film in this category, although arguably every single one had outstanding, definitely Oscar-worthy costumes.

BEST SOUND - 95% closed.

BEST SOUND EDITING – 95% closed.


I think the (digitally enhanced) Voldemort-makeup alone will convince voters here.


  1. I don't think a makeup nod is so certain, Black Swan wasn't nominated last year! It also featured some great digitally enhanced techniques.

    Also, HP will get strong competition for Sound & Sound Editing from Transformers.

    Definitely a lock for an Art Direction nomination, but Hugo seems to be the more likely winner from what I saw in the trailer.

  2. All that makes sense, I just simply think that A) even if the Academy will struggle to recognize the film in the main categories, technicals will be a walk and that could easily include makeup whether it deserves it or not and B) if voters have the option to award great sound and sound editing in a bad/mediocre film OR great sound and sound editing in a great film, they will probably go with the latter.

  3. People are very into this movie and so must be Academy Awards voters. I mean, it's the last HP movie and there's a great nostalgic feeling about it. Plus, the movie is great, holds an impressive 96% at Rotten Tomatoes and has a big couple of box-office records.
    In my opinion, the Academy SHOULD nominate the last HP movie in Best Picture category, not only because of its great quality but also due to the fact that it's a populist choice and audiences would go as crazy as they were when The Dark Knight or Wall-E were snubed...
    But I don't see it getting nominated in acting categories and in the best director one, due to the strong competition this year. Adapted Screenplay and Costume Design have chances but it won't be easy. All the other categories you said I agree with you

    great post, btw

  4. Thanks, P., fingers crossed it will get (at least)the best picture nomination.