Every year, the Entertainment Weekly Oscar preview issue talks to four anonymous members of the Academy and asks for who they voted four in the top races. The anonymity leads to some very candid thoughts on the Oscar race and, I think, provides the teensiest bit of insight into the narratives that are swirling around within the industry.
Also every year, I try my damnedest to figure out who these people are. The actors and/or directors, of course. I could give a shit which studio executives they talk to. This year's anonymous actress was especially intriguing to me. She called the 10-wide Best Picture race "idiotic" and said Maggie Gyllenhaal's Best Supporting Actress-nominated performance "almost ruined Crazy Heart for me." YEOW! So I decided to try and sleuth out who this outspoken lady is. Won't you help me?
Here's what EW says about "The Actress": This one-time Best Supporting Actress nominee has managed to toggle successfully between indie films and big studio projects. She's as funny on screen as she is frank off it -- especially when it comes to this year's new Oscar rules.
So, what we have to go on: "one-time Supporting Actress nominee" (do we assume this means she didn't win? or that she was never nominated for Best Actress?); splits time between indies and studio films; "funny on screen." Let's take a look at the contenders:
Why? She does a fairly perfect split between indie and studio; she's a gifted comedic actress; I could see her being ballsy enough to make these comments.
Why not? She's a two-time Supporting Actress nominee (Being John Malkovich; Capote)
Why? Only one BSA nomination, for Sideways; she's made indies and studio movies; she's pretty much got nothing to lose by being bitchy to Maggie Gyllenhaal.
Why not? "Funny on-screen"?
Why? One nomination, for Pieces of April, an indie movie that Patty alternates with her studio work (like Shutter Island), some incredibly funny performances, and I can see her being candid like this.
Why not? I don't like to think Patricia Clarkson would vote for Avatar. (Honestly, I really think she might be the one.)
Why? One nomimation (Almost Famous), and I could see where an EW reporter would do her the kindness of calling her film output "funny." And having seen Nine royally snubbed, I could see her being catty about the Best Picture category.
Why not? She hasn't "toggled between indie and studio movies" since Desert Blue.
Why? One-time nominee (The Sixth Sense), does studio and indie stuff, and her United States of Tara performance has given her a reputation for, if not comedy, at least dramady.
Why not? It sounds dumb, but I can't detect any Australian syntax in the comments. And she seems too nice, right?
Why? A one-time nominee (Boys Don't Cry), Chloe certainly doesn't seem too nice. She also has done plenty of indie, while Big Love could be seen as mainstream.
Why not? As shrilly comedic as Nicki Grant can be, I'm not sure we can call her screen persona "funny."
Why? Because Roommate Mark really thinks it sounds like her, and he cites Sarafina! as evidence that Whoop doesn't just favor big studio fare.
Why not? She won the Oscar on her lone Supporting Actress nomination, plus she has a Best Actress nomination besides. After watching her on The View every day, I can't see her going out of her way to slam another actress.
Okay, y'all, am I missing any prime suspects? Who do you think our mystery Actress is?