This is the film fan's favorite time of year, right? And not just because they have hopes of their loved ones buying them all of the cool movies they asked Santa for this year, but also because it's awards season. This means that almost every day, there will be news about nominations, winners, and more -- some obscure, some mainstream. Here are today's (and this weekend's) awards tidbits.
- The American Film Institute unveiled its annual "award" winners, which are basically lists of their ten favorite movies (and TV shows) of the year. This year's film picks, alphabetically: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Dark Knight, Frost/Nixon, Frozen River, Gran Torino, Iron Man, Milk, Wall-E, Wendy and Lucy, and The Wrestler. Since I've only seen about three of those movies, I'll refrain from editorializing too much, but it makes me even more excited about The Wrestler.
- The Satellite Award winners were announced Sunday, and no big surprises. Oh, wait, there were surprises. Top awards went to Slumdog Millionaire and Happy-Go-Lucky, which is awesome and also ... "Huh?" Top acting awards went to Sally Hawkins for Happy-Go-Lucky, Angelina Jolie for Changeling, Richard Jenkins for The Visitor, and Ricky Gervais (!) for Ghost Town. I'm not sure if these results tell me not to take the Satellite Awards seriously, or that we're going to have a very colorful awards season. Let's hope it's the latter, because that would be much more fun.
- The Oscar documentary shortlist (fifteen docs Academy members are asked to watch to narrow the nominees to five by January) has been released, and here's a sampling of what's on it: Werner Herzog's Encounters at the End of the World, Abu Ghraib film Standard Operating Procedure, and a look at Liberia's attempt at peace, Pray the Devil Back to Hell. See the full list here.
- A few groups of film critics also announced their picks: New York Film Critics gave Milk best picture honors (but they also loved Slumdog Millionaire). Boston Film Critics chose Wall-E and Slumdog Millionaire to share top honors. And the Women Film Critics Circle chose Changeling as the best movie about women and Frozen River as the best movie by a woman. (What? you expected Twilight?)