Friday, January 11, 2013

Mourning the loss of Oscar dreams: Ben Affleck's awkward Awards Season

What the fuck just happened?

I just wanted to take a minute to contemplate Ben Affleck’s pain in accepting the award for Best Director last night.  I know that winning an award is a great achievement, especially in the Directing category, but what an awkward night for someone like Affleck, who finds out early in the morning he has no shot at winning the Oscar (because he wasn’t even nominated) but then winds up winning the BFCA for direction, and his film  wins for Best Picture. 

Talk about a bittersweet moment. 

This really should have been the beginning of Affleck’s (and Argo’s) awards steamroll.  I said a few weeks ago (and have somewhat been saying all season) that Argo was our frontrunner in both categories.  It just seemed too perfect.  It was a fun film about Hollywood that was also a biopic that was also critically and commercially a hit that was also directed by actor turned director Ben Affleck, Oscar winner and beloved actor ‘all grown up’.  It was his time, and the industry knew it.  Things looked to be switching sides for Affleck and all the attention was thrust on Lincoln and then Zero Dark Thirty but in recent weeks it became clear that Argo was climbing back up to the top; winning slew of critics’ awards and then surprising in a few categories with BAFTA when Spielberg was snubbed. 

Then, yesterday morning happened and it basically killed Argo’s chances of winning anything. 

I saw it coming, but I don't think you did!

Here’s the sad thing (for Affleck); I think his winning streak isn’t over.  Sunday night he’ll win the Globe rather easily and I even think he’ll take the BAFTA.  I wouldn’t even been entirely shocked if his cast wins the SAG, and to be honest, I have a feeling the DGA might be his as well.  This is certainly turning into the weirdest Oscar year in history.  Since when has the directing frontrunner been snubbed the Oscar nomination? 

Like, never. 

Sad Eyes
And this brings me back to Affleck.  You could see it in his demeanor last night.  Sure, he was elated that his film won and that he won, but you could read the shock and awkward disbelief in not only his face but even the presenters faces as they read the name on the envelope.  When Affleck wins the Globe Sunday, I hope he doesn’t appear so bitter (he tried hard, and he made me laugh last night, but there was no denying that he was sour). 

Now, I have not seen Argo so I can’t even say whether or not Affleck was deserving, but I will say that I’ve been rooting for him all season.  I like him.  I’ve never really been enamored by his acting and I don’t love either of the films I have seen that he’s directed, but as a person I like him.  I was happy for him because this seemed like HIS year, and so despite the fact that Haneke and Zeitlin nominations made me literally jump out of my seat and yell “YES!!!” I immediately sat back down to the realization that the weirdest thing in Oscar history just happened. 

Oh, and the BFCA winners have been added to the Awards Tally Page.


  1. Yeah, I was really bummed about this. I also see him winning at the Golden Globes, and maybe BAFTA. If Argo won the Best Picture Oscar, who would get Director? That would be odd, but I'd love it. As a fan of Affleck's directorial work, I can't help but root for him. Especially since Amour doesn't have much of a chance in Best Picture.

    1. Yeah, I haven't seen Argo, but I've been rooting for Affleck. He's just so likable! Right now I think SLP has an edge, considering that late surge of unexpected love.