Lord in heaven knows, I really want Scarlett Johansson to get an Oscar nomination. This is not because I find her to be the hottest woman on the planet (but I do), but simply because she is far too talented to be regarded as a mere sex-kitten. I think that her overall sex appeal has overridden her massive talent, and she has settled over the past few years to take up roles that play too heavily on her presence and less on her skill. Remember back in 2003 when she blew the world away in two very uniquely separate performances. I do. In fact, I gave her joint Fisti wins that year, since choosing between the two performances was too difficult. Since then she has delivered some very interesting performances. She became Woody Allen’s new muse for a spell, turning in a seductively engaging turn in ‘Match Point’, geeking it up to comedic perfection in ‘Scoop’ (she should have been at least Globe nominated for that) and then slinking into a cheeky, somewhat naïve performance in ‘Vicky Christina Barcelona’. Despite the Universal consensus that Cruz and Hall were superior, I’ve always felt that Johansson was that film’s key player. Yes, she has had her fair share of thankless roles in forgettable films, and she is exploited passionately by the industry, but this girl is too amazing to go much longer without an Oscar nomination. Word that she aced her ‘Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ audition and failed to get the part because of her sex appeal is depressing to me since the idea of ScarJo in that role working with THAT man (Fincher) would have sent me into a frenzy (a good one).
And then there is word of ‘Under the Skin’ (adapted from the Michel Faber novel), a collaboration with Brian Glazer (finally, another movie) about an alien who seduces young men in order to abduct them and bring them back to her home planet, so she can eat them. This totally has a ‘Species’ feeling to it (alien seduction element) but then again, this is Brian Glazer and his previous two films (Sexy Beast and Birth) were both extremely impressive and showed true signs of ‘auteur in the making’ so I’m really anxious for this.
Could this be the role that gets Scarlett that Oscar nomination that has eluded her all these years? She was once considered the next big thing, and many people who witnessed her rise in 03 were convinced that she would at least have a nomination by this point. This certainly does NOT sound like Oscar fare, but Natalie Portman just won the Oscar for playing a psychotic lesbian ballerina, so stranger things have happened.